TEHRAN, Aug. 12 (Xinhua) -- Iranian officials criticized a photo of British and Russian ambassadors posted on Wednesday by the Russian embassy in Tehran, slamming it "disrespectful" as it reminds people of the Anglo-Soviet military invasion of Iran during World War II.
"I saw an extremely inappropriate picture today. Need I remind all that August 2021 is neither August 1941 nor December 1943," Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif wrote on Twitter late on Wednesday.
Early on Thursday, Iranian Parliament Speaker Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf also condemned the post, which he described in Persian as "far from diplomatic etiquette and inappropriate."
"Both ambassadors must formally apologize immediately, otherwise a decisive diplomatic response will be necessary," he added.
Russian embassy's Twitter post showed the Russian and British ambassadors Levan Dzhagaryan and Simon Shercliff sitting on the historical chairs where former Soviet leader Joseph Stalin and former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill sat during the 1943 Tehran Conference.
The post has been criticized on social media by a number of public figures, including former Iranian senior Presidential Advisor Hesamoddin Ashna, former Vice-President Shahindokht Molaverdi, and former parliament representatives.
On Thursday morning, the Russian embassy's official Twitter account stressed that the photo does not have "any anti-Iranian context," and did not aim to offend the feelings of "the friendly Iranian people."
The image, the embassy said in another tweet, was a "tribute to the joint efforts of the allied states against Nazism during the World War II."