'Khamenei ordered capture of British sailors'

March 31, 2007 18:06

An Iranian opposition group claimed Saturday that Iran's capture of 15 British sailors and marines was planned in advance and carried out in retaliation for UN sanctions imposed against Tehran. The National Council of Resistance of Iran - the political wing of the Iranian MEK opposition group which is listed as a terrorist group by Britain, the US and the European Union - said the British crew's capture was planned in advance, but offered no evidence to support the claims. Hossein Abedini, a member of the council's foreign affairs committee, claimed the group had obtained information from sources within Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard and had passed details to the British government. He did not provide any evidence or give further details. Britain's Foreign Office said it could not comment on Abedini's allegation, or say if it had evidence the operation was pre-planned. A spokeswoman said the MEK was a banned organization under British anti-terrorism laws - meaning the government had no dealings with the group.

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