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Iran Reviewing Ties With Britain

A top Iranian official has said Tehran is considering whether to downgrade relations with London as a dispute over the Iranian government's post-election crackdown on demonstrators intensifies.

Iran's Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki Wednesday said Iran was reviewing its ties with Britain. Earlier this week, Iran's Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani called on lawmakers to carefully consider revising Iran's relations with Britain.

Iran accuses Britain and other Western nations of instigating post-election unrest.

Diplomats expelled

On Tuesday, Britain said it was expelling two Iranian diplomats, in retaliation for Iran's order on Monday that two British diplomats leave the country.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has told Parliament Iran's expulsion order was unjustified, and that allegations of British meddling are "absolutely without foundation." He said Britain is expelling the two Iranian diplomats in London with regret.

EU condemns violence

European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana has condemned the violence that erupted in Tehran when Iranian security forces began suppressing protests. Solana was speaking in Stockholm, the Swedish capital, Tuesday.

Several EU nations, including Sweden, France and Finland, have called in Iranian envoys to hear a protest against the crackdown in Tehran. The Czech Republic, the current president of the European Union, lodged a similar protest Monday with Iran's envoy in Prague.

In contrast to the reaction in many other capitals, Russia said it views the election controversy as Iran's internal affair. Moscow said disputes about the vote must be settled in strict compliance with Iran's constitution and law.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.