Vladimir Radyuhin

MOSCOW: Russia has denounced the U.S. attack on the Iranian consulate in Iraq as an "unacceptable" and gross breach of international law.

"It is absolutely unacceptable for (U.S.) soldiers to storm a foreign country's consular institution on the territory of a third country," Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said on Friday. "It is the crudest possible violation of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations."

The spokesman described the U.S. raid on Tehran's diplomatic mission in Iraq's Kurdish-controlled north on Thursday, during which six Iranians were detained, as a "blunt abuse" of the U.N. mandate to the multi-national forces in Iraq.

Mr. Kamynin also criticised President George W. Bush's plan to send more troops to Iraq.