UK says Iran blocking website in censorship battle

(Reuters) - Britain accused Iran on Sunday of blocking a website days after it was launched by the British government to reach out to Iranians, in the latest spat over media censorship.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said the "UK for Iranians" website which he launched on Wednesday with a personal video message had been blocked three days later by Tehran.

"I condemn this action by the Iranian government. We have no quarrel with the Iranian people and regret that the Iranian authorities fear their own citizens' interaction and involvement with the outside world," Hague said in a statement.

Britain is at the forefront of Western opposition to Iran's nuclear program, supporting tough sanctions against Tehran which it fears is seeking the bomb. Tehran says its atomic activities are entirely peaceful.

Relations hit new lows last November when protesters stormed the British embassy, prompting London to evacuate its Tehran staff and expel all Iranian diplomats from Britain.

Iran said that was an over-reaction and accused London of censorship when its state-run English language news channel Press TV was banned from British airwaves by media regulator Ofcom in January.

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