U.K. Evacuating Diplomatic Staff From Iran Following Embassy Raid

Foreign Office refuses to say how many people were being removed one day after attack on embassy building; Norway closes embassy in Tehran over security concerns.

Britain said on Wednesday that it was withdrawing some staff and dependents from its embassy in Tehran, after the embassy was stormed by Iranian protesters earlier this week.

Also Wednesday, Norway's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hilde Steinfeld said the country has closed its embassy in Tehran, due to security concerns, but that diplomatic staff have not been evacuated from the country.

The British Foreign Office refused to say how many people were being removed or give other details.

Following the Iranian demonstrators' actions Tuesday, Foreign Secretary William Hague, echoing comments by U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, warned of "serious consequences" for Iran, adding that Britain would consider what measures it would take in the coming days.

Iranian protesters smashed windows, hurled petrol bombs and burned the British flag during a rally to protest against sanctions imposed by Britain, live Iranian television showed.

The attacks followed the rapid approval by Iran's Guardian Council of a parliamentary bill compelling the government to expel the British ambassador in retaliation for the sanctions, and warnings from a lawmaker that angry Iranians could storm the British embassy as they did to the U.S. mission in 1979.

Demonstrators waved flags symbolizing martyrdom and held up portraits of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

A separate group of protesters broke into a second British embassy compound in the north of the city, the IRNA state news agency said, and seized "classified documents."

קראו כתבה זו בעברית: מקור דיפלומטי: בריטניה פינתה את השגרירות באיראן