Iran’s embassy in UK: Grave allegations need hard evidence

Iran’s embassy in the United Kingdom has reacted to baseless allegations made by the British envoy at the United Nations over the country’s involvement in a recent incident for an Israeli-operated oil tanker in the Sea of Oman.

Barbara Woodward, UK’s permanent representative to the UN, reiterated the Group of Seven foreign ministers’ claim on Friday that Tehran was involved in the last week’s attack on the Israeli-managed tanker — Mercer Street — off the Omani coast, where two crew members were killed.

Labeling the attack as “deliberate and targeted,” Woodward claimed that Iran was “responsible” but said, “The door for diplomacy and dialogue remains open.”

Woodward also linked the global economy, goods and food to the security of commercial shipping, saying, “That is why we have international law that protects the freedom of shipping.”

The UK’s permanent representative to the UN accused Iran of “not respecting those laws,” and claimed that Iran’s activities “threaten international peace and security.”

Reacting to Woodward’s claims, Iran’s embassy blasted the international community’s inaction towards unlawful sanctions jeopardizing food, goods and commercial shipping of Iran and said, “International law shall apply on all and work for all.”

“Food, goods and commercial shipping of Iran is also being jeopardized for years either by unlawful sanctions or attacks on its vessels. But no reaction. International law shall apply on all and work for all,” it said in a tweet. “Grave allegations need hard evidence.”

Tensions have simmered in the region after a suspected drone attack last week on the Mercer Street, which was blamed on Iran by the United States, Israel and Britain, without any evidence.

The escalation also follows talks in the Austrian capital of Vienna to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, from which the United States withdrew in 2018 and reimposed draconian sanctions as part of attempts to bring the Iranian economy to its knees.

The unilateral sanctions were exacerbated by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, which has claimed millions of lives across the world.

Reacting to the G7 allegations on Friday, Zahra Ershadi, Iran’s deputy permanent representative to the UN, said the Israeli regime is “playing victim” to divert attention from its continuing crimes in Palestine, warning the occupying regime against any acts of “adventurism and miscalculations.”