03/31/2007, 00.00
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The EU sides with London over the captured marines

A declaration signed by all 27 EU Foreign Ministers asks Teheran to release the British marines captured in Gulf waters. Otherwise, measures will be taken.

Brussels (AsiaNews/Agencies) – The European Union has sided with London and has asked Iran to immediately release the 15 British marines captured in Gulf waters one week ago.  Otherwise, “necessary measures” will be taken. 


A declaration signed by all 27 Foreign Ministers from the EU states that the Union “deplores the arrests carried out by Iran” and expresses “unconditional support” for the British government.  Thus the EU has given a negative response to Tehran Foreign Minister’s request that the Union remain neutral.  


The United Nation’s Security Council has also expressed its desire to see a rapid solution to the crises.  


The European State’s statement has deeply affected the Iranian Government, which sees the Union (particularly Italy and Germany) as it’s most important trading partner.  A breakdown in relations with the Union, combined with American sanctions, would be a veritable disaster for Tehran.


Nonetheless, the Ahmadinejad government shows no signs of bowing to this pressure, but continues to seek a formal apology from London for the “invasions” of the waters.   For its part Great Britain maintains that the marines were taken hostage and demands their unconditional release.

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