The UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office updated the travel advice for British and British-Iranian nationals travelling to Iran, drawing attention to increased suspicion from security forces and the risk of arbitrary detention.

From the Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Safety and Security

British nationals – including dual British/Iranian nationals – face greater risks than nationals of many other countries. The security forces may be suspicious of people with British connections. The risks are likely to be higher for independent travellers or students than for people travelling as part of an organised tour or business people invited by the Iranian authorities or companies.

There’s a risk that British nationals and British/Iranian dual nationals could be arbitrarily detained in Iran. In such cases the Foreign and Commonwealth Office has serious concerns that the subsequent judicial process falls below international standards. The Iranian authorities don’t recognise dual nationality for Iranian citizens and therefore don’t grant consular access for FCO officials to visit them in detention.

Any behaviour that doesn’t have an obvious explanation can put you at risk, no matter how innocent you believe it to be. This may include travel off the beaten track, being present near crowds or sensitive sites, having contact with Iranians who are of interest to the authorities, taking photographs (except in major tourist sites), or behaviour that could be perceived as contrary to official Iranian interpretations of Islam. The threat to travellers is likely to be higher if there’s any national unrest, terrorist incident or an increase in tensions between Iran and the international community.

You should consider carefully the risks of travelling to Iran. If you choose to travel, keep a low profile.

The Iranian authorities have in many cases failed to meet their international obligations to notify Embassies when foreign nationals have been detained. Even if requested, adequate consular access isn’t always granted. You should therefore keep in close touch with family or friends back home.

Please click here to read the rest of the travel advice.

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