Six dead in Iran armed clash near Pakistan border

In this file photo, Iranian soldiers stand guard on a mound built to prevent drug trafficking in the Mirjaveh point where the borders of Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan meet, on Dec. 2, 2003. (AFP)
Updated 17 April 2018
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Six dead in Iran armed clash near Pakistan border

  • Three “terrorists” and three members of the Iranian security forces were killed
  • Sistan-Baluchistan is poor and home to a population that is predominantly Sunni and ethnic Baluchi

TEHRAN: Three “terrorists” and three members of the Iranian security forces were killed during night-time clashes along Iran’s border with Pakistan, state news agency IRNA reported on Tuesday.
“At 0130 this morning (2100 GMT Monday], a terrorist group from Pakistan attacked” a police post in the border area of Mirjaveh, around 75 kilometers southeast of Zahedan, the capital of Sistan-Baluchistan province, IRNA said.
Three of the attackers were killed along with a police officer and two members of the Revolutionary Guards, it added.
Iran has criticized Pakistan in the past for supporting the Jaish Al-Adl jihadist group, which it accuses of ties to Al-Qaeda and carrying out numerous attacks in Sistan-Baluchistan.
The restive province is poor and home to a population that is predominantly Sunni and ethnic Baluchi, in a country where 90 percent are Shiite and two-thirds are Persian.
From 2005 to 2010, Sistan-Baluchistan suffered a prolonged insurgency by the Balochi-Sunni jihadist group Jundallah, meaning “soldiers of Allah,” although violence was largely curbed after the killing of its leader in mid-2010.


Djibouti asks UN help to end border dispute with Eritrea

Djibouti’s UN ambassador, Mohamed Siad Doualeh. (Courtesy: Youtube)
Updated 8 min 44 sec ago
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Djibouti asks UN help to end border dispute with Eritrea

  • Eritrea had successfully resolved a dispute with Yemen over their sea boundary and a Red Sea island through binding international arbitration
  • Djibouti accused Eritrean troops of occupying the Dumeira mountain area

UNITED NATIONS: Djibouti is asking Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to help peacefully resolve a border dispute with Eritrea following the recent end to that nation’s 20-year border dispute with Ethiopia.
Djibouti’s UN ambassador, Mohamed Siad Doualeh, asked Guterres in a letter circulated Wednesday to work with the Security Council to bring his tiny port nation and Eritrea together “with the aim of facilitating an agreement between them upon a mutually acceptable means of peaceful dispute settlement.”
He said Djibouti’s preference would be to refer the dispute “to judicial settlement or arbitration” that would be legally binding.
Djibouti’s appeal to the UN chief follows the dramatic diplomatic thaw to one of Africa’s longest-running conflicts that began last month when Ethiopia’s reformist new prime minister fully accepted a peace deal that ended a 1998-2000 border war with Eritrea that killed tens of thousands.
Doualeh recalled that the Security Council imposed sanctions on Eritrea in 2009 “because of its aggression against Djibouti and its refusal to withdraw its troops from the disputed area, and its rejection of all efforts aimed at mediating between the two parties.”
Djibouti accused Eritrean troops of occupying the Dumeira mountain area shortly after the peacekeepers left on June 13, 2017, and lodged a formal complaint with the African Union.
“Eritrean forces continue to occupy Djiboutian territory, prisoners of war remain unaccounted for, threats of force continue to emanate from the Eritrean side and the risk of violent confrontation is once again high,” Doualeh said.
He warned that without any effort to end the border dispute, the UN monitoring group has said “the situation on the ground remains vulnerable to provocation by both parties, which could result in the rapid escalation of conflict.”
“There is thus an urgent need for a new dispute settlement mechanism,” Doualeh said.
He said Djibouti applauds the secretary-general’s recent decision to refer a longstanding border dispute between Venezuela and Guyana to the International Court of Justice. He also noted that Eritrea had successfully resolved a dispute with Yemen over their sea boundary and a Red Sea island through binding international arbitration.
Doualeh said Djibouti will “consider in good faith any proposals that you or the Security Council might make with regard to the appropriate means of peaceful dispute settlement.”