Monday 13 January 2020 12:01 pm

Iran’s ambassador to UK summoned by Foreign Office following arrest of British ambassador

Iran’s ambassador to the UK has been summoned by the Foreign Office in response to the “unacceptable” arrest of the British ambassador to Iran in Tehran this weekend.

Robert Macaire was detained for a short time on Saturday night after attending a vigil for those who died when Iranian forces mistakenly shot down a passenger plane.

Read more: UK accuses Iran of violating international law for arresting ambassador

Macaire left the vigil after it turned into a protest against the Iranian regime, and later tweeted that he “wasn’t taking part in any demonstrations”.


“This was an unacceptable breach of the Vienna Convention and it needs to be investigated. We are seeking full assurances from the Iranian government that this will never happen again,” said a Downing Street spokesperson. 

“We have summoned the Iranian ambassador today to the Foreign Office to convey our strong objections.”

Read more: Iran protesters demand leaders quit after shooting down of plane

It is understood that Foreign Office minister Andrew Murrison will attend the meeting. 

Under the terms of the 1961 Vienna Convention, it is illegal to detain diplomats.

Last week it emerged that the Ukranian Airlines crash, in which four Brits were killed, was unintentionally shot down by an Iranian surface to air missile. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called for a “full, credible and transparent investigation”.

This morning, Downing Street reiterated that, adding: “The families of the four British victims need justice and closure,” over what happened, after which the government will begin looking at “options for compensation”.



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