SAS 'for hire' after Iranian embassy siege in 1980

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The Foreign Office expected countries to ask for the loan of the SAS in a siege or hijack after the London Iranian Embassy rescue, documents show.

Documents from 1980 released by the National Archives reveal a discussion about a legal agreement to cover the use of the SAS by another country.

A memo says those countries would have to accept "prior responsibility for any claims for damage or injury".

The documents also reveal the government's pride in the SAS mission.

The special forces stormed the embassy on 5 May 1980, and within 15 minutes, the six-day siege by six Iranian Arab separatists was over. Five of the gunmen and two of the 26 hostages were killed during the siege.

The rescue operation by black-clad figures was watched by millions of people on television and it brought the SAS and its motto - Who Dares Wins - to the world's attention....

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