Portugal suspends visas to Iranians over security concerns

17 Jul 2019 / 10:45 H.

LISBON: Portugal has suspended issuing visas to Iranian citizens over security concerns, Foreign Minister Augusto Santos Silva said Tuesday, as tensions escalate between Tehran and the West.

“We suspended them for security reasons,“ Santos Silva told a parliamentary committee without giving further details, the Lusa press agency reported.

“I will provide an explanation but not in public for security reasons,“ he said.

“Portugal does not play around with entries into its national territory.”

The decision comes amid fraught relations between Iran and Western nations in a number of areas.

Iran and the United States have been engaged in a war of words since Tehran in recent weeks enriched uranium past the limit set by a landmark 2015 nuclear in response to Washington pulling out last year.

There has also been tension on the high seas, after the British Royal Marines helped Gibraltar authorities detain an Iranian tanker that US officials believe was trying to deliver oil to Syria in violation of sanctions.

In response Tehran has issued a series of increasingly ominous warnings to both the US and Britain about its right to take unspecified actions in reprisal.

And France has expressed concern about the fate of a French-Iranian academic arrested in Iran, the latest in a long list of dual nationals held in the country’s prisons. — AFP

email blast