‘British diplomat’s presence in January rallies was wrong’

February 18, 2020 - 19:47

TEHRAN - Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi has said that presence of British Ambassador Rob Macaire in rallies in Tehran in January was “wrong”.

“I am a diplomat and have served in various parts of the world. We, as diplomats, have no right to attend such events. Based on international law, we must never interfere in the domestic affairs of the countries where we are on a mission. A diplomat must not even express his/her views on such issues publicly. Rob Macaire, the British ambassador, really made a mistake,” ISNA quoted him as saying in an interview with Croatian daily of Vecernji list published on Monday.

He noted that a foreign diplomat’s presence in protests is contrary to international conventions.

On January 12, Iran’s Foreign Ministry summoned Macaire for his “unconventional behavior and presence” in the illegal gatherings.

The British diplomat was reminded that his presence in illegal gatherings has no conformity with his responsibility as his country’s political representative in Iran and that his behavior is in contrast to the 1961 Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations, the ministry said.

It added the British government should provide answers in this regard.

Ambassador Macaire was accused of “inciting” the protesters in front of the Amir Kabir University of Technology.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Abbas Araghchi said in a tweet on January 12 that Macaire was temporarily arrested for participating in the “illegal gathering” in Tehran.

“He wasn’t detained but arrested as an unknown foreigner in an illegal gathering. When police informed me a man’s arrested who claims to be UK Amb, I said IMPOSSIBLE! only after my phone conversation w him I identified, out of big surprise, that it’s him. 15 min later he was free,” Araghchi tweeted.

NA/PA

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