According to Iranian media, the second British envoy to Iran will be expelled after spying allegations.

Giles Whitaker, deputy chief of mission at the British embassy in Tehran, was among several foreigners detained by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards for alleged acts of espionage, according to state television.

A report said: “These spies were taking soil samples from the central desert of Iran where the Revolutionary Guards’ aerospace missile drills were taking place.”

The TV station showed footage of Mr Whitaker and his family in central Iran, where he appeared to be taking soil samples, adding that he had been kicked out of the area after apologizing.

Iran’s Fars news agency reported that Mr Whitaker, who was an army officer before a long career at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, will be deported after apologizing.

Also among those arrested were the husband of Austria’s cultural attache in the country and a Polish university professor who had been to Iran as a tourist, according to the report.

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