Britain wary of blaming Iran for attacks

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The Independent Online
BRITAIN will make common cause with Argentina today in backing a statement at the United Nations Security Council condemning terrorism, but will not name any country, such as Iran, until it has completed its own investigation of the two attacks in London this week.

Foreign Office experts on Iran 'do not rule out' Iranian responsibility. British officials also drew attention to remarks by the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Paul Condon, that the sophisticated nature of the Israeli embassy bomb was a clear indication of state involvement.

'But as to naming any country beinning with an I and ending with an N, we are not at that point yet,' said one official. Although the Argentines had arrested some Iranian nationals, 'we have to carry out our own investigation. It depends entirely on where the evidence points'.

The declaration will be in the form of a statement issued by the presidency of the Security Council rather than a resolution, because the latter requires an immediate point of concrete action. It is expected to condemn international terrorism in general, condemn the bombing of the Jewish centre in Buenos Aires, condemn the London attacks and call for greater co- operation among nations in combating terrorism.

Israel told the UN on Tuesday that investigations into the 18 July bombing in Buenos Aires and into the 1992 bombing of the Israeli embassy there 'pointed clearly to Iranian involvement'.

Britain has made repeated international demarches over terrorism in general and Iran in particular, especially since it accused Tehran of direct links with the Provisional IRA. The President of the World Jewish Congress, Edgar Bronfman, yesterday reiterated a claim that Argentina gave Britain advance warning that it was a likely target.