DUBAI (Reuters) – A prominent hardline Iranian cleric said expelling Britain’s ambassador would be “the best thing that can happen to him” as otherwise loyal supporters of a slain general could “chop him to small pieces”, the Eslahat news website reported on Tuesday.
Ayatollah Ahmad Alamolhoda, leader of Friday prayers in the eastern Muslim Shi’ite holy city of Mashhad, was referring to commander Qassem Soleimani, who was killed in a U.S. drone strike on Jan. 3.
Britain’s envoy was briefly detained on Saturday, a move London said was a violation of diplomatic conventions. The ambassador said he was attending a vigil for victims of a plane disaster. Iran accused him of attending an illegal protest.
Writing by Parisa Hafezi; Editing by Edmund Blair