France condemns violence against embassy in Iran

France on Monday accused Iran of not having done enough to stop demonstrators who attacked the French Embassy in Tehran with firebombs during protests last week against cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad. "The Iranian authorities did not ensure sufficient protection for our diplomatic mission," Foreign Ministry spokesman Jean-Baptiste Mattei said. "The measures put in place belatedly did not prevent the demonstrators from damaging our buildings."

Around 60 protesters chanting "Down! Down with France! Down! Down with Israel" threw firebombs at the embassy, shattering windows, even after a cleric at one of the Iranian capital's most prominent mosques, in his sermon earlier Friday, urged people not to attack diplomatic missions.

Mattei condemned the violence, saying, "we expect the Iranian authorities to take all the necessary measures to prevent a repeat of such unacceptable acts." The French Foreign Ministry also summoned an Iranian diplomat to remind Iranian authorities of their treaty obligations to protect foreign missions, Mattei added.

The cartoons of Islam's most revered figure including one of the prophet wearing a turban shaped like a bomb appeared in a Danish newspaper in September and were recently reprinted in several publications in France and elsewhere in Europe, reports the AP.


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