Iranian authorities have detained several local employees of the British Embassy in Tehran, a move that Britain's foreign secretary today called "harassment and intimidation" and reflected a hardening of the regime's stance toward the West. Iranian media said eight local embassy staff were detained for an alleged role in post-election protests, but gave no further details.
British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said "about nine" employees were detained yesterday and that four had been released. The detentions signaled a further toughening of Iran's dealings with the West, which has become increasingly vocal in its condemnation of a crackdown on opposition supporters. Last week, Iran expelled two British diplomats, and Britain responded in kind.