Blast rocks British Petroleum, British Airways offices in Tehran

Published November 2nd, 2005 - 10:22 GMT

A bomb exploded in Tehran on Wednesday outside the offices of British Airways and British Petroleum.  No claim was taken for the explosion, which reportedly caused some damage but no injuries. A strikingly similar attack occurred in the same area last August.

 

The bomb had apparently been placed in a trash bin on the tenth floor of one of the offices when it was detonated. "A hand-made bomb exploded, it only shattered a few window panes," one local source revealed. The offices of British Petroleum were evacuated as a result, according to Reuters.

 

The incident comes as relations between Iran and Britain are particularly strained, with the UK taking a major role in the campaign to halt Iran's nuclear program.

 

British imports have been denied access into Iran, supposedly in response to Iranian suspicions that Britain is behind several bombings in Iran's southwestern region of Khuzestan. Iran claims that the bombings were politically motivated by Britain, who is trying to incite Arab separatists in the region.

 

Ahmadinejad purges government of senior diplomats

 

Meanwhile, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has reportedly embarked on a purge of senior Iranian diplomats. The hard line president chose to relieve Seyed Muhammad Hossein Adeli, Iranian ambassador to London, of his post, according to the Guardian. Iranian ambassador to the United Nations, Muhammad Reza Alborzi, is also expected to be relieved of his duties. 

 

The move has alarmed many Western leaders who have been especially wary of Ahmadinejad's hard-line stance since his posting in June.

 

Just one week ago, the new president elicited widespread condemnation after declaring that Israel should be wiped off the map. 

 

Since Ahmadinejad took office, he has effectively broken off negotiations with Britain, France and Germany after resuming work on Iran's nuclear program.

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