Iranian radio reports ‘positive changes’

Hopefully, this isn’t the beginning of a cave on the part of the Brits.

Iranian radio reports ‘positive changes’ – Yahoo! News

TEHRAN, Iran – Iranian state radio reported that all 15 British sailors and marines held captive by


have confessed to illegally entering Iranian waters but, in an apparent softening in the dispute, said their statements would not air because of “positive changes” from Britain.

The softer tone was apparently mirrored in London, where an official said Britain has agreed to consider discussing with Iran how to avoid future disputes over contested waters in the Persian Gulf.

Britain, however, wants an unconditional release of the crew and is not “negotiating” for their freedom, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the crisis. Iran has demanded an apology from Britain as a condition for the release of the crew, who were seized March 23.

Britain contends the sailors were in Iraqi waters, however, and has said it would not apologize. It has also criticized the airing of footage of four of the sailors confessing so far, saying the statements appeared coerced and the broadcasting of captured military personnel violated international norms.

In video Sunday, the captives appeared on the state-run Arabic-language TV channel Al-Alam in separate clips, pointing at the same map of the Persian Gulf.

The first sailor, who was identified as Royal Marine Capt. Chris Air, said the Iranians supplied the group with GPS coordinates which he said were “apparently” in Iranian waters.

Air pointed with a pen to a location on the map where he said two boats left a warship of the U.S.-led coalition in


around 8:30 a.m. on March 23. He said the seven marines and eight navy sailors were captured around 10 a.m.

He said “we were seized apparently at this point here on their maps and on the GPS they’ve shown us, which is inside Iranian territorial waters.”


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