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Iran wants Afghanistan shore up border defenses in wake of migrants’ drowning

AT News

KABUL: Iran called on Afghanistan to get more control on the common border and prevent illegal cross-border by Afghans into Iran, a demand that came after dozens of Afghans who tried to cross the border illegally into Iran soil, were allegedly arrested and drowned in a river by Iranian border guards last week.

Iranian officials have denied any reports that their border police had hands behind the drowning of Afghan migrants.

Some media outlets in the western province of Herat quote local residents as claiming that their relatives were arrested by Iranian border forces and drowned in the Harirod River.

“On the mentioned day and place, no incident was taken place and the force of Islamic Republic of Iran had no confrontation with Afghan nationals,” Abbas Mousavi, Spokesman of Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

But an Afghan delegation appointed to investigate the allegations, has said that the bodies of 10 drowned people were found while 15 more were still gone missing.

Afghan and Iranian foreign ministers agreed in a phone conversation to jointly investigate the claims.

Iranian officials also called on Afghan side to reactivate those border outposts recently inactive to have more control on illegal cross-borders.

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