Iran to utilize cutting-edge equipment in fight maritime smuggling: border guard chief

February 3, 2020 - 10:22

TEHRAN - The commander of Iran’s border guards said on Saturday that his forces will soon use state-of-the-art equipment to counter drug and fuel trafficking in the country's southern waters.

Brigadier General Ghasem Rezaei pointed to Iran’s long coastal borders and the need to fight against fuel smuggling and said,

“Border guards have always adopted necessary measures to fight against maritime crimes and the process will be intensified using up-to-date equipment in the future,” Ghasem Rezaei stated as he pointed to Iran’s long coastal borders.

Since oil derivatives such as gasoline and diesel are heavily subsidized in Iran, they are very tempting targets for smugglers.

Brigadier General Rezaei said 14 million liters of fuel have been seized from smugglers in coastal and deep waters in the current Iranian year, which ends on March 21, 2020.

The figure shows a 2.5 increase in comparison to the corresponding time last year, he explained.

The commander went on to say that drug trafficking to Europe and the U.S. via Iran’s southern waters has also increased.

“Necessary precautions have been taken to identify illegal consignments in Iran’s southern waters”.

In May 2019, Rezaei said that Iran has increased coordination with border guards of Pakistan and Turkey to stem the flow of drug trade.

Iran is the third country, after China and Russia, in terms of the number of neighbors in the world, with a total of 8,755 kilometers of common border with its neighbors, Rezaei said at the time.

Iran shares land and sea borders with 15 countries.

“Given the characteristics of countering the arrogant power (an indirect reference to the U.S.), no country is facing peripheral threats as much as the Islamic Republic of Iran,” he added

One of the main problems that Iran was facing over the past years was on the borders with Pakistan, he said, stating since the security situation in Pakistan’s Baluchistan region was in a bad shape terrorists and criminals used this weak point to infiltrate into the region.

The commander added that Iran has no concerns over common maritime and land borders with the neighboring countries despite the threats close to the borders.

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