The U.S.-led occupation authority in Iraq says it will shut most border crossings with Iran to improve security against foreign fighters and terrorists. U.S. Administrator in Iraq Paul Bremer said Saturday that the coalition plans to close 16 of the 19 border crossings between the two nations. He said the number of police along the border would be doubled to about 16,000.
Mr. Bremer's spokesman, Dan Senor, said Iranians entering Iraq by land will have to present a passport and be entered into a data base.
Thousand of Iranian pilgrimis have been entering Iraq to visit the Shi'ite holy cities of Najaf and Karbala.
Meanwhile, Washington has sent a senior official to Iraq to urge the Iraqi Governing Council to invite the United Nations back to the country.
Elsewhere, a bomb exploded in a shop in a Baghdad commercial district, killing a relative of a member of the Governing Council. Witnesses said a man left a bag in front of the store just before the explosion.
And in Tikrit, the hometown of ousted Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, a roadside bomb killed two U.S. soldiers and wounded four others.
... Payvand News - 3/14/04 ... --