Iranian Speaker Slams Disrespectful Behavior by British, Russian Envoys

Iranian Speaker Slams Disrespectful Behavior by British, Russian Envoys

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – The speaker of the Iranian Parliament slammed the ‘disrespectful’ behavior of the Russian and British ambassadors to Tehran for publishing a bizarre picture and urged them to immediately apologize.

Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf took to Twitter to condemn the picture taken in the Russian Embassy, adding that the Foreign Ministry of Iran should quickly address the “diplomatically disrespectful and improper behavior” by the ambassadors.

He stressed that both ambassadors must apologize for their behavior right away, or a decisive diplomatic response would be imperative.

On Wednesday, the Twitter account of Russian Embassy in Iran posted a photo of the new British Ambassador to Tehran, Simon Shercliff, sitting upstairs in the porch of the Russian Embassy building with Russia's Ambassador Levan Dzhagaryan.

The setting and location of the photo recalled the 1943 Tehran summit, where then-British prime minister Winston Churchill, then-US president Franklin D. Roosevelt, and then-Soviet Union leader Joseph Stalin sat together for a photo opportunity.

The 1943 conference is widely notorious among Iranians and is considered as an aggression and humiliation of Iranian identity and sovereignty.

The photo was broadly criticized by all walks of life in Iranian media and social networks.


Faced with the anger in Iran, the Russian Embassy tried to justify the meeting at the specific site with two more tweets on Thursday and said, “We would like to note that it does not have any anti-Iranian context. We were not going to offend the feelings of the friendly Iranian people.”

“The only meaning that this photo has to pay tribute to the joint efforts of the allied states against Nazism during the Second World War. Iran is our friend and neighbor, and we will continue to strengthen relations based on mutual respect,” it added.

Tehran has friendly, strategic relations with Moscow since both sides share similar positions on many regional and international issues; however, the post-Islamic Revolution Iran has time and again proved that it does not tolerate any attack on or insult to its sovereignty and independence — a red line for the nation — by either the Westerners or the Easterners.

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