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Eritrea says probes activities of British diplomat

July 12, 2007 (ASMARA) — Eritrea has arrested a British diplomat accused of activities transgressing diplomatic norms. Asmara said he was authorized to leave the country after probing his activities.

A British diplomat, “using as cover the British Council” - which the Eritrean government gives necessary support as an educational institution - was found trying to install communication gadgets and satellite equipment and was apprehended, Eritrean authorities said Thursday.

Director General of the European Desk at the Eritrean Foreign Ministry, Fisehatsion Petros, has said that a British diplomat attached to the British High Commission in Addis Ababa, who was on a visit to Eritrea and was found to have engaged in activities contravening his diplomatic status, has been granted permission to leave the country, on his request, after being sufficiently interrogated on his activities.

The Eritrean official said it does not wish to respond through the mass media to statements from various quarters aimed at covering the fact.

Ambassador Fisehatsion cautioned government officers from innocently falling into the trap of cooperating with some foreigners in the name of benefiting the government and the country.

(ST)