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Iran closes trade route with Afghanistan after border clashes

AT News

KABUL: In the wake of deadly clashes between Iranian and Taliban forces along southern borders, Iran has closed the Milak border crossing with Afghanistan, a major trade route between the two neighbors.

Economic exchanges through the Milak crossing have been suspended due to the deadly fighting along the border, said a top ranking Iranian transport official Ayoub Kord on Sunday.

Iran claims the Taliban opened fire on the Iranian side at the Sasouli border post, promoting hours of heavy clashes that saw the Taliban sending troops to the border area.

Two Iranian border guards lost their lives in the clashes, which inflicted also damage on the Taliban, according to the officials.

This is as tensions have subsided and officials from both nations have called for dialogue. The border dispute came amidst a simmering conflict between Tehran and Kabul over water from Helmand River, to which Iran claims rights. While Iran blames Afghanistan for violating a 1973 treaty on sharing water from Helmand River with Iran, the Taliban deny any transgression of the pact saying the River doesn’t have enough water, most of which is reserved in Kajaki Dam.

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