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Iran Broadcasts Another British Sailor’s Apology

From a delighted Associated Press and YouTube:

Iran broadcasts British sailor’s apology

By NASSER KARIMI, Associated Press Writer

One of the 15 British service members held captive in Iran appeared Friday on the government’s Arabic-language TV and said he apologized “deeply” for entering Iranian waters without permission.

Iran also released a third letter supposedly from the only woman in the group saying she has been “sacrificed” to the policies of the British and U.S. governments.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair, whose government has insisted that its navy personnel were captured in Iraqi waters, immediately denounced Iran’s treatment of the captured navy personnel and said it would only lead to further isolation for Iran. The standoff has added to tensions over Iran’s nuclear ambitions and over allegations that Iran is arming Shiite Muslim militias in Iraq.

“I don’t know why the Iranian regime keeps doing this, all it does it heightens people’s sense of disgust. Captured personnel being paraded and manipulated in this way, it doesn’t fool anyone,” he said in a brief statement. “And what the Iranians have to realize is that if they continue in this way they will face continued isolation.”

In the video Friday, Royal Marine rifleman Nathan Thomas Summers was shown sitting with another male serviceman and the female British sailor Faye Turney against a pink floral curtain. Both men wore camouflage fatigues with a label saying “Royal Navy” on their chests and a small British flag stitched to their left sleeves. Turney wore a blue jumpsuit and a black headscarf.

“We trespassed without permission,” Summers said, adding he knew that Iran had seized British military personnel who strayed into their waters three years ago.

“This happened back in 2004 and our government said that it wouldn’t happen again,” Summers said. “And, again, I deeply apologize for entering your waters.”

It was not known whether the marine spoke under pressure from his captors, but Summers said in the broadcast “our treatment has been very friendly.”

Iran earlier broadcast a video showing Turney saying her team had “trespassed” in Iranian waters, and on Friday released a third letter from her.

The first two letters attributed to Turney said she was sorry the crew strayed into Iranian waters and asked if it wasn’t time for Britain to withdraw its troops from Iraq. The first letter was wooden; the second and third had language that was even more stilted.

“I am writing to you as a British serviceperson who has been sent to Iraq, sacrificed due to the intervening policies of the Bush and Blair governments,” the letter Friday said.

British Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett, who also denounced Friday’s video as “appalling,” said a letter from Iran on the detention of the 15 sailors and marines had done nothing to bring the standoff to a close.

The letter stopped short of asking for a formal apology but instead asked for Britain to acknowledge its sailors had trespassed into Iranian waters and confirm that it would not happen again…

Where is the outrage?

This article was posted by Steve on Friday, March 30th, 2007. Comments are currently closed.

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