Tehran, March 20, IRNA -- Iran on Thursday closed its borders with Iraq shortly after the US-led attack against the regime of Saddam Hussein started, the Islamic Republic's deputy interior minister and head of the Bureau for Aliens and Foreign Immigrants Agency, Ahmad Hosseini, said.
Hosseini, who is also the head of the Iranian interior ministry's refugee crisis headquarters, said so far no refugees had been sighted near the Iranian borders.
The official reiterated Tehran's earlier announcements that any Iranian assistance to probable refugees would be carried out inside the Iraqi soil.
Hosseini predicted that a protracted war would unleash a refugee influx of between 500,000 to 1.2 million towards Iranian borders.
Imam Khomeini port not affected by US-led war on Iraq
The US-led war on Iraq has not disrupted usual business in Iran's most active southern port of Imam Khomeini.
The provincial Ports and Shipping Department in a statement on Thursday brushed off reports that the war had adversely affected actvities at the port, emphasizing that the port continues offering services as usual.
The department has assured Iranian and international shipping lines and owners of goods that their ships and cargos would be protected against any danger, considering the long distance between the port and sites of conflicts inside Iraq.
Iran scraps flights to Kuwait
Iran on Thursday cancelled its morning and evening flights to Kuwait from Tehran following the US attack on Iraq, an official of the Civil Aviation Organization, Reza Jafarzadeh, said.
"Flights from Tehran to Behrain have also been cut to as few as possible and there is the possibility that those flights are also cancelled," he added.
Domestic flights, however, are carried out normally and any cancellation of flights to southern Iranian cities, near the Iraqi border, will be announced accordingly, Jafarzadeh said.
Iran on Thursday closed its borders with Iraq shortly after the US-led attack against the regime of Saddam Hussein started, the Islamic Republic's deputy interior minister and head of the Bureau for Aliens and Foreign Immigrants Agency, Ahmad Hosseini, said.
Tehran has adopted a position of "active neutrality" in the Iraq crisis.
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