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Iran protests mistreatment of pilgrims by American troops in Iraq

Source: IRNA, Baghdad

Iran's Hajj and Pilgrimage Organization on Monday voiced protest against the American troops' insulting behavior towards Iranian pilgrims in Iraq.

Imam Hussain Shrine in Karbala, Iraq

Deputy Head of the Organization for holy sites affairs Hossein Akbar told a press conference in Baghdad on Monday that the U.S. forces' act of having Iranian pilgrims fingerprinted and giving eye test along Iraqi borders is illegal, unconventional and in contradiction with current Tehran-Baghdad accords.

He said the Islamic Republic of Iran has informed the Iraqi government of its displeasure with the U.S. troops' misconduct towards Iranian pilgrims who travel to Iraq for pilgrimage purposes and Baghdad too has promised to look into the issue.

"The U.S. forces' misconduct towards pilgrims takes place on Zarbatieh border (Mehran) because the responsibility to guarantee security of Vaset Province has not yet been ceded to the Iraqi government. In Basra, however, where full security responsibility lies with the Iraqi government no such insulting behaviors occur," he added.

He noted that the U.S. forces are now inspecting all people falling in the age group of 18 and 40 and take their fingerprints and perform eye tests on them.

... Payvand News - 10/15/08 ... --

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