Iran to Deploy More Troops to Confront Afghan Bandits
Iran's police force is deploying more troops equipped with state-of-the-art arms along its eastern borders to confront armed Afghan bandits, the deputy state police chief said Sunday.
"Owing to ceaseless efforts of police, the security along the eastern borders has been stabilized and the armed bandits are on the verge of destruction," Brigadier-General Amir-Ali Amiri was quoted as saying by the official Iranian news agency (IRNA).
"The volunteer Basij forces are annihilating the armed bandits who are involved in hostage-taking and kidnapping," he said.
Amiri said Iran is to burn narcotics seized over the past year throughout the country to mark International Drug Control Day, June 26.
Amiri added that Iran would also launched an anti-drug campaign as of June 26 to clean up the country.
Armed bandits and drug traffickers occasionally kidnap citizens in the eastern border province of Khorassan for ransom or to secure the release of their own gang members, said IRNA.
Iran is a major route in the drug trade, which originates from Afghanistan and Pakistan to markets in the Arabian Gulf, Europe and beyond.
The Iranian government spent nearly $20 million last year in the fight against drug trafficking, and has armed thousands of villagers along its eastern border to help combat traffickers.
Official reports say 3,100 Iranian police officers have been killed in drug-related battles throughout Iran over the past two decades – Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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