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Students' protests before British embassy represent "Iranians' sentiment": speaker

(Xinhua)

13:56, December 01, 2011

TEHRAN, Nov. 30 (Xinhua) -- Iran's Majlis (parliament) speaker said Wednesday that the students' protests before British embassy represent Iranian people's sentiment towards Britain.

Ali Larijani made the remark at a press conference in Tehran one day after thousands of angry Iranian students staged protests in front of the British embassy in central Tehran and the British Council compound in the Qolhak area in northern Tehran. Some protesters entered the embassy compound and removed the British flag.

Tuesday's rampage came one day after Iran's Guardian Council of the Constitution, the country's highest legislative body, unanimously approved a bill to downgrade diplomatic ties with Britain in response to its "hostile" policy.

Iranians have been annoyed by the British government's behaviors in the past, and if Britain continues its hostility, Iran will react properly and in the same way, said Larijani.

However, any protests and measures should be based on laws, he said, referring to some students' aggressive behaviors such as entering the embassy compound and causing damage to the embassy's property.

Larijani also described the UN Security Council's condemnation of the incident as "hasty."

"The hasty measure taken by the UN Security Council to condemn the Iranian students' move is aimed at concealing the past crimes of the U.S. and the UK," the speaker said.

The Security Council on Tuesday condemned "in the strongest terms" the attacks on the British embassy, calling on the Iranian authorities to protect diplomatic and consular property and personnel, and to respect fully their international obligations.

On Tuesday, the Iranian foreign ministry expressed regret over the attacks on British embassy and the ensuing incidents.

In a statement issued Tuesday, the ministry said that it respects international regulations concerning the security of diplomatic centers in Iran, adding that it will handle the case through legal channels.

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