NICOSIA, Cyprus — Iran said today it is reducing the staff of its Paris embassy and will break off relations unless France quits blockading the mission and punishes policemen who allegedly beat an Iranian envoy.
Pierre LaFrance, the French charge d'affaires in Tehran, was summoned to the Foreign Ministry and handed a note saying ties will be ended in 72 hours unless the conditions are met.
Iran's official Islamic Republic News Agency, monitored in Nicosia, said the diplomatic staff in Paris was being reduced to a minimum. French officials said about 40 Iranians work at the embassy, including five diplomats.
France wants the embassy to turn over Wahid Gordji, an Iranian interpreter without diplomatic immunity who has taken refuge there. He is wanted for questioning about five bombings in Paris last year that killed 11 people and wounded more than 150.