Sunday, September 9, 2012

Canada closes Iran embassy, says Tehran 'most significant threat' to world peace

Citing nuclear program, hostility to Israel and assisting Assad, Foreign Minister John Baird said Canada will expel all Iranian diplomats within five days; Netanyahu: Canada took a moral step.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speaks at Iran's nuclear enrichment facility in Natanz.
Photo by AP
Canada has closed its embassy in Iran and will expel all remaining Iranian diplomats in Canada within five days, Foreign Minister John Baird said on Friday, denouncing Tehran as the biggest threat to global security.

Baird cited Iran's nuclear program, its hostility toward Israel and Iranian military assistance to the government of President Bashar Assad in Syria, which is locked in civil war with rebels, as the reasons for suspending diplomatic relations....

Accusing Iran of showing blatant disregard for the safety of foreign diplomats, Baird said "Canada views the government of Iran as the most significant threat to global peace and security in the world today."

"Under the circumstances, Canada can no longer maintain a diplomatic presence in Iran ... Diplomatic relations between Canada and Iran have been suspended," he said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated the Canadian Prime minster Steven Harper on Friday, following Canada's announcement.  -- Reuters, Associated Pressand Barak Ravid via Haaretz

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