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Smugglers cash empty Nimroz border with Iran, Pakistan

Smugglers cash empty Nimroz border with Iran, Pakistan

By
On
Apr 13, 2017 - 16:30

ZARANJ (Pajhwok): There is even not a single security post on the dozens of kilometers long border of southwestern Nimroz province with neighboring Iran and Pakistan, letting militants and smugglers easily travel between the three countries.

Nimroz is one of Afghanistan’s major border provinces in the southwest. It lays to the east of the Sistan va Baluchestan province of Iran and north of Balochistan, Pakistan. Nimroz is surrounded by Farah in the north and Helmand province in the east.

Local officials say most border villages of the province in Chahar Burjak district with Iran and Pakistan are without security posts. They say the areas will likely become more vulnerable in future.

A border police official, who wished to go unnamed, told Pajhwok Afghan News Nimroz shared a 236-kilometer border with Iran and there were no security post along a 80-kilometer portion of the border.

He said Nimroz also shared a 185-kilometer border with Pakistan that 135 kilometers of it lacked security posts.

Few years back, the Afghan government decided to deploy another border battalion on Nimroz borders, but no action had since been taken to materialize the plan despite a shortage of police personnel, the source said.

The emptiness of the border paved the ground for militants and drug smugglers to easily rolled over the border, he said.

A provincial council member, Mulavi Gul Ahmad Ahmadi, also confirmed dozens of kilometers of the border with Iran and Pakistan were without security posts, saying Nimroz would face increased problems in future if the situation remained the same.

“More security forces should be deployed to Nimroz and the border should be patrolled through the air to deny militants and smugglers movement in the area. If the government really wants to resolve security problems, it should control all the country’s borders,” he said.

On the other hand, Mohammad Nabi, the administrative chief of Chahar Burjak district, said the district shared 85 kilometers uncontrolled border with Iran and 135 kilometers with Pakistan.

“The emptiness of the border enables militants and smugglers to openly cross into Afghanistan,” he said.

Sher Ahmad, a human trafficking guide, said the openness of the border allowed 500 to 600 Afghan laborers to cross into Pakistan and then Iran for work on a daily basis.

Ahmad, who has been helping people cross the border into Iran for the past several years, said people in the past would usually face robbers in the border area, but such incidents had decreased after militants arrested and hanged a group of robbers.

A local police official, who spoke on the condition to anonymity, said the border issue had been repeatedly shared with the central government, but to no benefit.

Pajhwok tried to seek comment from the Ministry of Interior (MoI), but failed.

mds/ma