New UK govt urged to impose sanctions on Tehran

New Conservative Party leader and incoming prime minister Boris Johnson leaves his campaign office in central London on July 23, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 28 July 2019

New UK govt urged to impose sanctions on Tehran

  • Iranian opposition leaders demand world action to rein in Tehran

LONDON: The new British government, led by Boris Johnson, should do more to support the Iranian opposition and the “UK and Europe should impose sanctions on the malicious regime.”

The National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) held a rally in London on Saturday, as part of a last leg of a series of protests held across Europe and in Washington, DC to pressure governments to follow the Trump administration’s decisive policies against Iran and its threatening aggressions that undermine the security of the Middle East and the Gulf in particular.
The event coincided with the recent seizure of a British-owned oil tanker and it demonstrated the opposition's commitment to pressure the UK government to do more to stop the Iranian regime.
Dr. Matthew Offord, prominent Conservative MP for Hendon, said “the interest of the international community converges today with the democratic aspirations of the Iranian people, which simplifies in an Iran without the absolute rule of the theocracy.”
Speaking to Arab News, Brian Binley, former Conservative MP said the Iranian government is one of the most dangerous governments in the world, operating in one of the most concerning areas.
“I promise that I will do my best to arrange a meeting with Boris Johnson, the new prime minister, and I will arrange that meeting in conjunction with my colleagues, in order to speak to him and attempt to get a better reaction to the Iranian situation than we've had before from previous governments. I've been disappointed with my government's reaction,” Binley said to Arab News.
Meanwhile, Roger Lyons, former TUC president raised the issue of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a duel British-Iranian citizen who has been detained in Iran since 2016 and said the UK would not abandon her cause, again pressuring Johnson to do more to secure her release.
On the other hand, Lyons told Arab News that Labour leader “Jeremy Corbyn has been on the payroll of Iran's Press TV for far too long and he has been taking the side of the ayatollahs, rather than the Iranian people.”
Lastly, Struan Stevenson, coordinator of the campaign for Iran Change, said around 3,000 people attended the rally, in central London’s Trafalgar Square.
“We want regime change, we want to get rid of this evil regime. We're here appropriately underneath the statue of Admiral Nelson. What would Nelson make of a British flag ship being seized by pirates, a case of international criminal piracy in the Straits of Hormuz. He would be turning in his grave!”
“So our message today to the new British prime minister Boris Johnson is to be tough on this regime as they are spreading terrorism and war across the Middle East and the world,” he told Arab News.


Damascus angered by Turkish army convoy heading for key Syria town

Updated 37 min 45 sec ago

Damascus angered by Turkish army convoy heading for key Syria town

  • Dozens from both sides have been killed in the latest fighting
  • Syrian and Russian airstrikes aimed at hindering the convoy’s advance through Idlib province

DAMASCUS: Damascus on Monday condemned the deployment of a Turkish military convoy toward a key town in northwestern Syria where regime forces are waging fierce battles with militants and rebels.
“Turkish vehicles loaded with munitions... are heading toward Khan Sheikhun to help the terrorists... which confirms once again the support provided by the Turkish regime to terrorist groups,” a foreign ministry source quoted by the state news agency SANA said.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based war monitor, reported Syrian and Russian airstrikes aimed at hindering the convoy’s advance through Idlib province.
The Idlib region is supposed to be protected from a massive regime offensive by a buffer zone deal signed between government ally Russia and rebel backer Turkey in September.
But it was never fully implemented, as militants refused to withdraw from the planned demilitarized zone.
On Sunday pro-regime forces entered Khan Sheikhun in Idlib province for the first time since they lost control of it in 2014.
They are battling to seize a key highway connecting government-held Damascus with the northern city of Aleppo, which the regime retook from rebels in December 2016.
Dozens from both sides have been killed in the latest fighting.
Militant group Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham, led by Syria’s former Al-Qaeda affiliate, controls most of Idlib province as well as parts of the neighboring provinces of Hama, Aleppo and Latakia.