Tags: Iran | protest | critics | West

Iran Bristles at West Over Protest Criticism

Tuesday, 29 Dec 2009 10:42 AM


BEIRUT, Lebanon — Iranian authorities continued arresting hundreds of opposition members and accused the United States and Britain on Tuesday of orchestrating the violent demonstrations that rocked the capital and other cities on Sunday.

The sister of Nobel peace laureate Shirin Ebadi was detained on Monday night, according to opposition Web sites quoted by news agencies.

A spokesman for Iran’s Foreign Ministry said countries including the United States and Britain had miscalculated in criticizing the government’s response to the demonstrations, which the government said left at least eight people dead in Tehran. The opposition counted five more deaths in other cities.

“Some Western countries are supporting this sort of activities,” said the spokesman, Ramin Mehmanparast, according to The Associated Press. “This is intervention in our internal affairs. We strongly condemn it.”

He said the British ambassador to Iran would be summoned for discussions.

The British government said its ambassador, Simon Gass, would respond “robustly” to any criticism and would reiterate calls for Iran to respect the rights of its citizens.

The speaker of Iran’s Parliament, Ali Larijani, rebuked American and British officials for their “disgraceful comments” about the demonstrations, according to the state-run PressTV. The criticisms of Iran’s action were “disgustingly vivid that they clarify where this movement stands when it comes to destroying religious and revolutionary values,” he said.

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