Source: Mehr News Agency, Tehran
The Iranian police have seized a large shipment of illicit drugs weighing 11 tons and 39 kilograms in the southeastern province of Sistan and Baluchestan after a 36-hour clash with smugglers, the commander of Iran's National Border announced during a press conference on Saturday.
Brigadier General Hossein Zolfaqari said that it was the largest shipment which had been seized since the victory of the Islamic Revolution of 1979.
Of this amount, 10.693 tons were opium and the rest was hashish, he said.
Police forces, who had been informed about the planned movement of illicit drugs across the border, were stationed along a 77-kilometer stretch of border between Iran and Pakistan and clashed with smugglers and seized the shipment after killing one of the smugglers and injuring a number of them, Zolfaqari explained.
Deputy National Police Chief Ahmadreza Radan also announced on Tuesday that 300 tons of illicit drugs had been seized since the beginning of the current Iranian calendar year, which started on March 20.
Of this amount, 77 tons had been seized in Sistan and Baluchestanafter Province, he added.
International drug routes
According to the United Nations, Iran ranks first among all countries in the world in shutting down drug routes into its territory.
Iran has been used as the main conduit for smuggling illicit drugs from its eastern neighbors to drug kingpins in Europe.
In response, the Iranian government has spent millions of dollars to seal its borders and prevent the transit of illicit drugs destined for European, Middle Eastern, and Central Asian countries.
About 4000 Iranian security forces have been martyred in clashes with drug smugglers over the past three decades.
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