As Murray had mentioned two days ago, it seems that the Brits are backing off their maritime border claims:
At a working level, Whitehall is trying to get reality back into the British position, though this may get stomped on again by the spin doctors. One of my many friends within the FCO has seen minutes between officials discussing “Craig Murray’s points” on the border question and whether admitting the border is unclear could be a path to getting our people back (Freedom of Information request for that minuting, anyone?).
The Observer today gives the first hint that the MOD may be looking to backtrack on its unsustainable border claims:
“But the Ministry of Defence hinted for the first time it may have made mistakes surrounding the incident. An inquiry has been commissioned to explore ‘navigational’ issues around the kidnapping and aspects of maritime law.”
And indeed, that has made Tehran welcome “positive changes” in Britain’s position:
a British official said the government is willing to discuss ways to avoid territorial disputes in the Persian Gulf to free the sailors.
Now, there’s a great deal of optimism that, if the trend continues, the British sailors will be soon released