Iran accused Canada on Saturday of "hostile behavior" under Israeli and British influence after Ottawa cut diplomatic relations, and it raised the prospect of swift retaliation.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said the move was a "continuation of anti-Iranian policies" by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Conservative government, which has long had poor relations with Tehran.

"The current government of Canada under the leadership of Mr. Stephen Harper is known for extreme policies in the domain of foreign policy," Mehr news agency quoted Mehmanparast as saying.

"The hostile behavior of the current racist government in Canada in reality follows the policies dictated by the Zionists (Israel) and the British."

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