Iran says diplomats should respect regulations of countries after Argentine diplomat's "smuggle" case

09:07, October 02, 2009      

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After Argentine diplomat's attempt to "smuggle" antiques from Iran was foiled, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Hassan Qashqavi said Thursday that diplomats should fully observe and respect the regulations of the countries, the official IRNA news agency reported.

The semi-official Fars news agency reported Tuesday that Iran's customs officers foiled the plot of an Argentine diplomat who sought to smuggle tons of antique objects and ancient artifacts from Iran.

Iran's Cultural Heritage Organization and Customs Department were working on the discovery of a number of invaluable antiques which the former Argentinean diplomat in Tehran was trying to smuggle out of Iran, Qashqavi was quoted as saying by IRNA.

He condemned such behaviors and said Iran was awaiting the final conclusion of investigations, IRNA said.

Sebastian Zavala, former counselor of the Argentine Embassy in Tehran, intended to leave Iran in June after over seven years of work in the Argentine Embassy in Tehran, whose belongings contained a large number of boxes, said Qashqavi.

Iranian customs officers grew suspicious of his luggage and when inspecting them in the presence of Argentine's charge d'affaires in Iran, they discovered a large number of antiques, including old Iranian coins, ancient manuscripts and old guns, IRNA quoted Qashqavi as saying.

According to Fars' earlier report, the cargo, packed in 250 cardboard boxes and weighing about 4,000 kg, included different kinds of antiques and ancient objects.

Source: Xinhua
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