INTRODUCTION: Since the former Iranian president Mr.
SCU Frenchmen showing passports as they enter air terminal.
CU & SCU Woman handing out airline tickets at terminal. (2 SHOTS)
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Background: INTRODUCTION: Since the former Iranian president Mr. Bani-Sadr flew to France to escape from the Iranian authorities on 29 July relations have deteriorated between the two countries. The Iranians have called on the French government to return Mr. Bani-Sadr for trial. The French authorities refused. Fearing there might be reprisals against their nationals in Iran they asked them to return to France. The first group of 57 people left on Monday (10 August).
SYNOPSIS: There was no trouble when the French arrived at Teheran Airport. There were fears that Iranian militants might try to take hostages as they did at the United States Embassy. These fears grew on Thursday (6 August) when Islamic Revolutionary Guards stopped a French group from leaving.
After three hours of diplomatic negotiations the French received permission to evacuate their nationals in two groups. Then on Friday (7 August) a leading Iranian clergyman, Ayatollah Meshkini, called for reprisals against France. The French spent an anxious weekend waiting and President Mitterrand cancelled a holiday so that he could keep in touch with the situation. But the first evacuation went smoothly. A second group of about 70 French nationals -- including the ambassador who has been ordered to leave the country by the Iranians -- are due to fly out on Wednesday (12 August).