Afghanistan says 9 migrants killed by Iranian border guards

May 11, 2013 17:22


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HERAT, Afghanistan - Iranian guards fired on a large group of Afghan migrants illegally crossing the border overnight, killing at least nine people, Afghan officials said on Saturday.

Hostility to the US role in Afghanistan, regional ambitions and an economy choked by Western sanctions have contributed to a tough Iranian policy against Afghan migrants who flee war and seek work in their more prosperous neighbor.

The Iranian Interior Ministry in Tehran declined to comment. Iranian officials in Kabul could not be reached.

Around 300 Afghan men were trying to make their way from Afghanistan's western Farah province into Iranian territory when the guards opened fire, witnesses and officials said.

"Nine Afghans were killed, but the number may increase," said Abdul Samad Khan, district governor of Lash-e-Joveyn in Farah province near the Iranian border.

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