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Iran considers action against London

Dec. 28, 2010 at 10:00 AM
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TEHRAN, Dec. 28 (UPI) -- Iranian lawmakers are obligated to give a serious response to British accusations regarding Iran's human rights record, the speaker of Parliament said Tuesday.

Tehran is outraged at London following comments made by Simon Gass, the British envoy to Tehran. Gass on Dec. 9 -- International Human Rights Day -- spoke out against Iran's alleged practice of arbitrarily arresting journalists and political activists.

"Nowhere are they under greater threat than in Iran," Gass said.

Ali Larijani, the speaker of the Iranian Parliament, said Tehran was "necessitated to give a serious response (to London)," the semiofficial Fars News Agency reports.

Iranian lawmakers are considering a measure to cut diplomatic ties with London over the human rights row.

Ramin Mehmanparast, a spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry, said London needs to address the issue promptly or face a diplomatic backlash.

"If British authorities do not heed these sensitivities and refuse to somehow correct their past mistakes, the reaction of the Iranian nation and lawmakers may be different from the past," he was quoted as saying.

There was no official response from the British Embassy in Tehran since the Dec. 9 comments from Gass.

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