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Iran lobbies Taliban to reopen Islam Qala border

AT News

KABUL: Iranian officials and the Taliban have a plan to reopen the Islam Qala border crossing to let traders continue export-import to resolve people’s problems in Afghanistan.

Mohammad Taghi Hashemi, head of foreign nationals department in Iran’s Razavi Khorasan province was quoted by BBC Dari as saying that Islam Qala border crossing would probably reopen and renormalize activities within next few days.

Taliban Spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid was also quoted by BBC as saying that he hoped the Islam Qala border crossing reopen so that “the merchandise is not held behind the border points and businessmen do not suffer loss”.

The Islam Qala crossing border in the western Herat province was closed this week by Iranian side after Taliban took control of the area. It is border point with Iran’s Tayebad area of Razavi Khorasan.

Mujahid said that the two sides want the border crossing begin “ordinary activitie” in Islam Qala. He added that the two sides would let export and import be done normally under the law.

“The need of Afghan people and local residents on the border areas requires that the Islam Qala-Dogharoon crossing point have stable activities,” Hashemi said.

He said that security at the border point was good since Taliban took control of the border crossing.

The government of Afghanistan did not comment.

The Iranian official said that Iranian trucks which were in Afghan soil when Taliban captured the Islam Qala, crossed the border and entered Iran without any problems.

Hashemi said he was waiting for formal order from Tehran for the reopening despite Taliban’s readiness to reopen it soon.

Islam Qala is the most important border crossing in Afghanistan and its closure seriously affects the price of goods in Afghanistan markets because a lot of essentials come from Iran.

Abu Nasr Farabi is another border crossing between Afghanistan and Iran in Farah province. The border crossing is also under Taliban control.

The insurgent group also controls over the Gholam Khan border port with Pakistan, Sher Khan port with Tajikistan and Torghundi port with Turkmenistan.

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