Iran summons UK envoy over May’s pro-GCC remarks

British Prime Minister Theresa May attends the first GCC British Summit in Sakhir Palace Bahrain, December 7, 2016. (Reuters)

Iran summoned the British ambassador on Saturday to protest against “interference” by prime minister Theresa May after she told GCC leaders she would help counter the country’s influence in the region.

Nicholas Hopton was told by a senior Iranian diplomat that “irresponsible, provocative and divisive comments by Theresa May at the [Gulf] summit are unacceptable and we reject them”, foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi said, quoted by state television’s website.

“It is expected that such unacceptable remarks will not be made again.”

Addressing the GCC Summit in Bahrain, Ms May on Wednesday reaffirmed British support for traditional allies in the region and said her country would help “push back against Iran’s aggressive regional actions.”

In a joint statement, GCC states and Britain agreed to a “strategic partnership” and said they “oppose and will work together to counter Iran’s destabilising activities”.

Iran and Britain reopened their respective embassies in 2015 after a nuclear deal with world powers.

The two states appointed ambassadors in September for the first time since 2011.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:49 - GMT 06:49