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Kuwait denies diplomat held in Iran New Year raids

KUWAIT, Jan 4 (Reuters) - Kuwait has denied that one of its diplomats in Tehran was among more than 250 people arrested in a crackdown on New Year's Eve celebrations, al-Watan newspaper reported on Thursday.

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs denies the arrest, especially since it had not received any information regarding the issue from Tehran," the newspaper quoted Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Suleiman Shaheen as saying.

A police official in Tehran said two Arab diplomats, a Bahraini and a Kuwaiti, were among those detained.

The official said those arrested had been charged with mingling with the opposite sex and consuming alcohol -- both barred in the Islamic Republic.

The accused from two separate New Year's parties either paid hefty fines or received lashes before being released. Some were forced to sign pledges to avoid future parties.


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