TEHRAN, Jan 26: Several members of Iran’s border security forces were killed in an ambush near the Pakistani border, state radio reported on Monday.

The report cited a police commander who alleged that Pakistan had become a “backyard for rebels and drugs smugglers” and said that Iran could help if Islamabad was not able to secure its side of the boundary.

“A pick-up truck moving at Mirjaveh border point (in southeast Iran) carrying special provisions for border outposts in the past day was ambushed by a group of rebels in which a number of our colleagues were martyred,” the commander, only identified as Nekouhi, was quoted as saying.

He did not say how many Iranian border police were killed.

“The rebels entered from the Pakistan border and returned there using the same route after committing the inhuman act,” the commander added.

Iranian security forces regularly clash with heavily armed drugs smugglers and bandits in the southeast border area around Sistan-Baluchestan province next to Pakistan’s border.

Nekouhi said that Iran had notified the Pakistani authorities about the incident.

“In the event that Pakistan is not able to control this, they can invite us and we will help them inside Pakistan to encounter and eliminate rebel, hostile and smuggling groups,” he added. —Reuters

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