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UPDATED: 09:36, April 05, 2007
Syria welcomes Iran's decision to release British sailors
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Syria welcomed on Wednesday Iran's decision to release 15 British sailors and marines taken captive 13 days ago, the official SANA news agency reported.

"Syria hails this correct decision and sees it as an example of positive outcome for adopting dialogue and diplomacy among countries," an official source at the Foreign Ministry was quoted as saying.

Earlier, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced that his government decided to release immediately the 15 British navy personnel, which was a "gift" to Britain.

Earlier on Wednesday, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem told Kuwait's Al-Anbaa newspaper that Damascus was mediating between Iran and Britain over the detained British sailors.

"Such a solution requires quiet diplomacy and Syria is undertaking such diplomacy between the two countries," he was quoted as saying.

The British Sky News TV reports also said Qatar and Syria had played useful roles in the release of British navy personnel.

The Iranian forces seized the 15 British sailors on March 23 for "incursion" into its territorial waters. But Britain said its soldiers were in Iraqi territorial waters.

Source: Xinhua

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