Iran says UK-linked arrests show ‘destructive role’ in protests | Daily News Byte

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Dec 26 (Reuters) – Iran’s foreign ministry said on Monday that the arrest of citizens linked to the United Kingdom showed London’s “destructive role” in recent protests in Iran.

Asked by a reporter to comment on Sunday’s announcement in Tehran of the arrest of seven people linked to Britain, Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani said: “Some countries, especially the ones you mentioned, had an unconstructive role regarding recent developments in Iran.

“His role was completely destructive and instigated riots”.

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said on Sunday that seven people, including some with dual nationalities, had been arrested in connection with the anti-government protests that have rocked the country.

The British Foreign Office said it was seeking further information from Iranian officials on reports that British-Iranian dual nationals had been arrested.

Kanani said Tehran had notified the detainees’ respective governments and “informed them of their crimes”.

Detainees were allowed to contact their families during the Christmas holidays, he said, for “humanitarian reasons”.

Tehran has blamed foreign enemies and their agents for orchestrating the protests, which have turned into a popular uprising by Iranians from all walks of life, one of the boldest challenges to the country’s authoritarian rulers since the 1979 revolution.

It has taken increasingly aggressive measures against dual citizens, arresting dozens since the unrest began. Such a move has drawn further international condemnation and isolated the Islamic Republic.

As of Sunday, 507 protesters, including 69 minors, had been killed, rights group HRANA said. It said 66 members of the security forces were also killed. As many as 18,516 protesters are believed to have been arrested.

Kanani said the files of some detainees have been completed, while others are still being investigated.

dubai.newsroom@thomsonreuters.com

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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