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Iran Says U.K. Must Admit Sailors Were In Iranian Waters

Turney on Iran's Arab-language state TV, Al-Alam, on March 28 (epa) March 29, 2007 -- Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Mottaki has said Britain must admit that Iran arrested 15 British naval personnel in Iranian waters.

His comments to Reuters come after Iranian state television broadcast some of the detained Britons, including the only woman crew member, who said they had "trespassed" into Iranian waters last week.

Mottaki also said the servicewoman, Faye Turney, would be released "as soon as possible," after earlier reports suggested she could be released as soon as today.

Mottaki later said Iran has agreed to allow British officials to meet with the detained sailors.

British Defense Minister Des Browne said it was "unacceptable" for Iran to "parade" the British sailors on television.

Browne also said global-positioning data showed the British sailors and marines were some 3 kilometers within Iraqi waters when they were captured by Iranian gunboats.

British Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett told parliament on March 28 that Britain would freeze all ties with Iran apart from contacts to resolve the crisis.