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Iran slams acts of violence against its diplomatic missions, envoys

A screen grab from a video of a gathering in front of the Iranian Embassy in Norway, where several people attempted to enter the mission, on September 29, 2022. (File photo via Twitter)

Iran has denounced acts of violence committed against its diplomatic missions and envoys in certain countries in the wake of nationwide protests that erupted last month following the controversial death of a young woman.

Iran’s deputy permanent representative to the United Nations said in a statement on Tuesday that some of the country’s diplomatic missions, consular premises, and diplomats have been the target of acts of violence in some European countries, including Norway, Belgium, Greece, Germany, Bulgaria, the Netherlands, Italy, United Kingdom, Denmark and Sweden.

“My delegation would like to express its condemnation of any acts of violence committed against its missions and representatives, in particular, the significant delays in intervention or failure to take any measures by receiving states’ law enforcement forces in some cases,” Zahra Ershadi said in a statement before the 6th Committee on protection, security and safety of diplomatic missions and representatives.

“In addition to being exceptional and significant, the scope and scale of this well-organized violence against Iranian diplomatic and consular facilities, as well as their representatives in Europe, are also a part of a larger campaign that some states have been waging against Iran,” she said.

Since last month, assailants have on several occasions targeted Iran’s diplomatic sites and the country’s ambassadors in European countries. The acts of violence have occurred in the aftermath of the death of 22-year-old woman Mahsa Amini in hospital three days after she collapsed at a police station in Tehran.

Protests erupted across Iran after Amini’s death on September 16, which was immediately picked up by Western-based media outlets claiming that she was "murdered" by police forces without providing any convincing evidence.

Iran immediately released the CCTV footage showing the young lady fainting and being subsequently transferred to a hospital. Iranian authorities also conducted an investigation into the incident, concluding that Amini’s death was caused by an illness, rather than alleged beatings.

Misusing diplomatic immunity

Ershadi further said that acts of violence conducted against Iran’s diplomatic and consular premises and their representatives also include the provocations among local populations in some of our neighboring countries, such as Iraq and Afghanistan.

She noted that such acts are conducted by the diplomatic missions of a number of specific countries accredited to those countries.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran invites the respective states to engage in a constructive dialog with the diplomatic missions in their territories with a view to examining the most effective ways to ensure the full protection of diplomatic and consular missions and representatives,” she added.

The Iranian envoy also raised  concerns over the “unlawful attempts” made by certain states to misuse diplomatic immunities and privileges to “conceal operations that would ultimately undermine the sanctity of the functions of diplomatic envoys.”

“Members of the missions and the sending States are expected to fully respect Iran's laws and regulations as the receiving state, including refraining from meddling in its internal affairs.”

“Iran remains willing to resolve any disputes in this respect peacefully and strongly urges other states to uphold their obligations under the two Vienna Conventions,” she added.

Elsewhere in her remarks, Ershadi said Iran also objects to the “forceful intrusion of our diplomatic and consular premises in Tirana on 8 September 2022 by Albanian police forces after the unilateral severance of bilateral relations by the government of Albania.”

Last month, Albania’s special police forces, wearing masks and helmets and carrying automatic rifles, trespassed into the compound of Iran’s diplomatic mission after two cars with diplomatic plates had left.

According to reports, the Albanian police were inside the diplomatic mission for 30 minutes and searched the building which still flew the Iranian flag.

The trespassing took place a day after Albania, which has for years hosted anti-Iran terrorists in collusion with the US, severed diplomatic ties with Tehran, accusing it of orchestrating a July “cyberattack” against Tirana.

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