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Friday, July 03, 2009
Embassy emloyees to be tried

Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, an ally of Khameini, and head of the Guardian Council in Iran, announced during Friday prayers in Tehran that the Iranian employees of the British embassy who are still detained will be put on trial after they have "made confessions."

There's a phrase that sends an icy chill down one's spine.

Jannati did not say how many of the British detainees would be tried or what they would be charged with.

Last Monday, the day after the employees were arrested, Iranian foreign ministry spokesman, Hassan Qashqavi, said that Iran preferred to keep normal diplomatic relations with the EU, which is its biggest partner for trade.

“Reduction of ties is not on our agenda with any European country, including Britain,” he said.

Wednesday, however, the FARS news agency reported that one unnamed employee

“had a remarkable role during the recent unrest in managing it behind the scenes.”

Ayatollah Jannati also suggested today that the authorities considered Mir Hussein Moussavi a traitor. In an Associated Press report,

Jannati pointed out that Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, leader of Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution, once said that "anyone disrupts unity has not only committed a sin but also has committed treason against the Islamic Republic and the system."

The EU appears to be backing away from its threat to have all 27 member nations pull their ambassadors out of Tehran, with Germany and others are arguing that doing so leaves little room to maneuver diplomatically should the crisis worsen.

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posted at 8:09 AM

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