AFP: Iran on Sunday dismissed foreign warnings over the safety of Tehran's controversial new airport as "obsessive propaganda".
"Above all we see these issues as an obsession or unfriendly propaganda," said foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi. AFP

TEHRAN - Iran on Sunday dismissed foreign warnings over the safety of Tehran's controversial new airport as "obsessive propaganda".

"Above all we see these issues as an obsession or unfriendly propaganda," said foreign ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi.

In warnings coinciding with last month's reopening of Imam Khomeini International Airport, Britain and Canada told their citizens travelling in and out of Iran to use Tehran's old facility instead.

Britain has said it is concerned by reports that the runway may have been built over qanats -- underground irrigation channels that criss-cross the Iranian desert -- and at risk from subsidence.

"The airport's safety is not in question," Asefi said, pointing to the fact that the warnings were issued "only a few hours before the inaugural flights."

Iran on Tuesday described the travel warnings as "dangerous".

The safety concerns were the latest in a series of setbacks to the new airport, which has been decades in the making and which Iran hopes will one day rival Dubai as a regional transport hub.

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