More than two weeks after the United States gave Iran five days to pull 183 diplomats from its embassy and four consulates in this country, the State Department is unable to verify that the order has been carried out. t
The Iranian charge d'affaires here, Ali Agah, has not given the U.S. government a list of names of the 35 embassy and consular officials who will be allowed to remain, the department acknowledged yesterday.
In addition, there is no accounting for the whereabouts of the Iranian diplomats who were to lose their diplomatic credentials and immunity Dec. 17 and immediately "either leave or make other arrangements."
Instead, spokesmen said, Agah has merely "informed us that 163 Iranian diplomatic and consular employes have had their services terminated" during the 11 months since the Iranian revolution. That means as many as 20 formerly accredited diplomats are unaccounted for.
According to information made available Dec. 12, there were 57 Iranian diplomats accredited to the embassy here, and 161 to the consulates in Chicago, Houston, New York and San Francisco.
That total of 218 was to be cut to 35 by Dec. 17.
On that date, reporters were told that a list of 34 diplomats to be allowed to remain had been received at the State Department and that the other 183 or 184 would leave.
Yesterday, however, the department dislosed that the original list of diplomats who would remain had been pulled back on the ground that the Iranians "wished to revise it." The final list of 35 has still not been received.
"We are not able to provide a detailed accounting of what arrangements are being made by Iranians who have lost their diplomatic or consular status," the department said. "They have been asked to contact the appropriate regional office of the Immigration and Naturalization Service if they have any questions about their status."
Officials privately explained that the list of 218 diplomats dated back to the early days of the regime of the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, and that it may have contained many names of Iranians carrying U.S. passports or holding long-term resident's permits.
But it was conceded that no attempt had been made to collate those lists or update them.
"It's possible that some of them have just faded into the woodwork," an official said.