Iran may hold trial for UK military personnel held for border violation

[JURIST] An Iranian ambassador has said his country could put 15 detained British military personnel on trial for violating international law, according to reports in state media Saturday. Iran detained [JURIST report] eight British Royal Navy sailors and seven Royal Marines [UK MOD statement] in waters along the disputed Iraq-Iran border last week, denouncing [IRNA report] the British forces for their "illegal and interventionist" entry into Iranian territorial waters.

The UK has condemned the detentions [MOD statement] and submitted the matter to the UN Security Council [official website], but Iranian officials say the UK could resolve the matter by admitting the trespass and apologizing for its mistake. The British government has published GPS data [MOD press release] that it insists shows the personnel were not in Iranian waters. The soldiers were seized at the mouth of a river that Iraq refers to as the Shatt al-Arab [Wikipedia backgrounder] and Iran calls the Arvandrud. Control of the river and its use has been a longstanding source of tension [ICE backgrounder] between the two countries. AP has more.

 

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