Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 22 November 2019

US and Iran headed for confrontation, says Tehran’s ambassador to UK

Hamid Baeidinejad said the consequences would be very serious for everyone in the region

Hamid Baeidinejad, Iranian Ambassador to the UK. The Oxford Union/Shutterstock
Hamid Baeidinejad, Iranian Ambassador to the UK. The Oxford Union/Shutterstock

The US and Iran are heading towards “serious confrontation”, Tehran’s ambassador to Britain has warned.

Hamid Baeidinejad, whose mission in London is the site of a protest by the husband of jailed British-Iranian charity worker Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, made the claims to CNN.

His comments come after the US military released photographs that it said proved Iran was behind attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman last week.

Mr Baeidinejad said the recent escalation had increased the possibility of conflict between the two nations.

“Unfortunately we are heading towards a confrontation, which is very serious for everyone in the region,” he said.

Mr Baeidinejad said the footage that the US released last week had been distorted.

Meanwhile, staff working for the Iranian embassy put metal fences up outside the building in Knightsbridge as Richard Ratcliffe staged his fourth day of hunger strike to protest against his wife’s imprisonment in Tehran.

Mr Baeidinejad complained on Tuesday that Mr Ratcliffe’s protest, which began on Saturday, had blocked the doorway to the embassy.

Video footage shows him sitting passively as staff put the barriers up around him and the small tent in which he has spent the previous three nights sleeping.

Dual national Ms Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who has been imprisoned in Iran on espionage charges since 2016, launched a hunger strike on the same day as her husband in Iran’s notorious Evin prison.

Mr Ratcliffe is urging for her to be released from prison and is calling on the Iranian authorities to allow British embassy officials to check on her health.

He has also asked for a visa to be able to visit her in Iran.

Updated: June 19, 2019 01:19 AM

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