World News Brief, Thursday December 1

Tit for tat between Britain and Iran after students raid British embassy in Tehran; International community condemns incident (+ analysis); Clinton arrives in Burma after vieled dig at China; EU to expand rescue fund, but may struggle to raise money; Turkey says Assad "at the end of the road", imposes sanctions; One million on strike in Britain; and more

Top of the Agenda: Iranian Students Storm British Embassy

Hundreds of Iranian students raided the British embassy compound in Tehran on Tuesday in response to new UK economic sanctions targeting Iran's nuclear programme. A day earlier, the Iranian government moved to expel the British ambassador. The embassy attack was thought to be sponsored by hardliner elements (WSJ) within the Iranian government.

After six embassy staff members were temporarily held hostage, the British Foreign Office announced Wednesday that it had started evacuating diplomats (NYT) from Tehran.

The international community widely condemned the incident. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said he was "shocked and outraged," while Russia--a close ally of Iran's--called the attack "unacceptable" (al-Jazeera).


The storming of British Embassy by Iranian protesters complicates the search for a negotiated solution to the standoff over Tehran's nuclear program, and it appears to reflect infighting among Iranian factions, write Reuters' Adrian Croft and Mohammed Abbas.

There was little dissembling the official nature of the demonstration that stormed the British embassy and residence in Tehran, argues this Guardian editorial.

The embassy attack was no impromptu happening. Police stood by, and Iranian state television broadcast events live, says this Wall Street Journal editorial. Western media insisted the attackers were "students." To Iranians who know better, they were the basij militia, the regime's first line of defense.



Clinton Arrives in Burma

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton landed in Burma for the first visit to the country by a US secretary of State in over fifty years (WashPost). Clinton will meet with the country's new civilian president, Thein Sein, as well as opposition leader and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi.

SOUTH KOREA: Speaking at the Forum on Aid Effectiveness (Yonhap) in Busan, Clinton said developing countries should be cautious of donor countries solely interested in extracting resources rather than "building capacity."



EU agrees to expand rescue fund – but can't say by how much

Turkey blacklists Syria, says Assad at "end of the road"

UK strikes close schools, operating theatres


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