Iran Holds 15 British Sailors and Marines Hostage

The Iranians said the 15 British sailors and marines were in Iranian waters. The British say they were in Iraqi waters. I’d believe the Brits over the Iranians any day of the week.

Iran says it took 15 British servicemen hostage at gunpoint because they had crossed into Iranian waters.

The eight Royal Navy sailors and seven Marines were seized by Iranian troops while carrying out a routine inspection in what the British say were Iraqi waters.

According to reports on Iran state television, the British envoy has been summoned to the foreign ministry in Iran to discuss the “illegal entry into Iranian waters of military personnel”.

Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett has asked Iran for “a full explanation” for the detention of the British servicemen and demanded their “immediate and safe return”.

They were taking part in a routine operation boarding merchant ships when they were taken captive by Iranian naval vessels.

The Iranian ambassador Rasoul Movahedian was summoned to the Foreign Office in London following the seizure in what was described as a “brisk but cordial” meeting.

Mrs Beckett said: “We have asked for a full explanation on what has happened and we are leaving them in no doubt that we want the immediate and safe return of our personnel and their equipment.

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