Iranian border guards fire mortar shells inside Pakistani territory

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QUETTA: Iranian border guards on Saturday fired three mortar shells in Mashkail, Pakistan’s bordering town with Iran, officials said.

A security official who requested anonymity told Dawn that mortar shells fired by Iranian guards landed in deserted areas close to the sparsely populated Balochistan’s Mashkail town.

“The mortar shell attack caused panic among the people,” the official said, adding that Frontier Corps (FC) and Levies personnel reached the spot and security was tightened around the border.

No casualty was reported in the attack, the official added.

Today’s shelling came hours after a junior officer of the FC was killed in an attack by Iranian border forces in Mand area of Balochistan’s Kech district. Four FC personnel were injured.

Moreover, the Balochistan government demanded that the centre take up the issue of continued border violations by Iranian border guards with the Iranian foreign office.

Jan Muhammad Buledi, spokesman for the Balochistan government, stated that Iran had been violating Pakistani territory and attacking civilians for the past three days. Buledi has demanded Islamabad to take up this issue with the Iranian foreign office and lodge a formal protest in this regard.

Earlier on Friday, the Iranian border guards had stormed inside the Mand area of Balochistan and had attacked a vehicle of Frontier Corps, killing one soldier and injuring three others.

Khan Wasay, a spokesman for FC troops in Balochistan, told Dawn that at least 30 Iranian border guards had entered into Pakistan’s bordering town of Nokundi and made the residents hostage for six hours.

“We have sent a formal letter to Islamabad regarding Iranian intervention and violation,” Akbar Hussain Durrani, Secretary Home and Tribal Affairs Department Balochistan told Dawn.

Durrani said the provincial government had taken up the matter seriously and urged the capital to raise this issue with Tehran.

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