Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 19
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
Iran's police seized 897 kilograms of various narcotics including 692 kilograms of opium and 205 kilograms of hashish in the country's south-eastern Province of Sistan and Baluchestan in two different confrontations with drug smugglers on the Iran-Pakistan border at the village of Jakigur and the northern borders of the province, head of border police of Sistan and Baluchestan Province, Hassan Asadollahi said, ISNA news agency reported on Dec. 19.
Two smugglers have been arrested and one other killed, the report said.
On Dec 17, Iranian border guardians killed two so-called terrorist and injured two others, The Young Journalists Club quoted Deputy Commander of Iran's Border Guards for Operations Brigadier General Jalal Setareh as saying.
This "terrorist" group was neutralized when they were crossing the Iran-Pakistan borders at the village of Jakigur, according to the report.
Gen. Setareh said that some arms, ammunition and satellite communication-related equipment was taken from them.
He didn't give further information about the group, but there are several active militant opposition groups, including Jundullah in the Sistan and Baluchistan province, which are fighting against the Iranian government. This province is a major drug trafficking district in the country.
Iran lies on a major drug route between Afghanistan and Europe, as well as the Gulf states. The Islamic Republic shares about 900 kilometers of common border with Afghanistan, across which about 74 percent of opium is smuggled.
According to official estimates, the fight against drugs annually cost Iran about $1 billion. Statistics also say that there are about 2 million drug users in Iran.
It was reported that 500 tons of drugs were seized during the last solar year and more than 215 tons during the first 5 months of the current solar year (started on March 21).
Every year, Iran burns more than 60 tons of various seized drugs as a symbol of its determination to fight drugs.
Edited by C.N.