Ikke overraskende kunne de 15 britiske soldatene fortelle om psykologisk press og trusler i fengslet. Teheran sa de hadde fått utdelt manus da de kom hjem.
British sailors and marines held for nearly two weeks in
Iran were blindfolded, bound and threatened with prison if they did not say they had strayed into Iranian waters, a Royal Navy lieutenant who was among the capitives said Friday.
Lt. Felix Carman, safely home with his 14 colleagues, said the crew faced harsh interrogation by their Iranian captors and slept in stone cells on piles of blankets. Unable to see and kept isolated, they heard weapons cocking.
«We were blindfolded, our hands were bound and we were forced up against a wall. Throughout our ordeal we faced constant psychological pressure,» Carman said. «All of us were kept in isolation. We were interrogated most nights and presented with two options. If we admitted that we’d strayed, we’d be on a plane to (Britain) pretty soon. If we didn’t, we faced up to seven years in prison.»
Within hours of the news conference, Iranian state television said the British military had «dictated» to its sailors what to say.
Carman sto hardt på at hadde soldatene gjort motstand ville det endt med blodbad for britene, og det ville utløst en alvorlig krise mellom de to land.
Det første døgnet ble de avhørt på en røff måte, men likevel inntenfor det man måtte vente. Det var først da de ble fløyet til Teheran at atmosfæren forandret seg.
«We had a blindfold and plastic cuffs, hands behind our backs, heads against the wall. Basically there were weapons cocking. Someone, I’m not sure who, someone said, I quote, ‘Lads, lads, I think we’re going to get executed,’ » he said in a separate interview with the B.B.C. «After that comment, someone was sick, and as far as I was concerned he had just had his throat cut. From there we were rushed, to a room, quick photo, and then stuffed into a cell, and didn’t see or speak to anyone for six days.»
It was the beginning of days of psychological games intended to extract «confessions» that they had been in the wrong after straying into Iranian waters — days in which the lone woman among them was tricked into believing the men had all been released, and in which all of them were held in isolation, not permitted even a whispered word with a fellow captive.