Iran Sealed The Goldsmid Line After Violent Protests in Zahedan

Iranian authorities have sealed a key crossing point with eastern Balochistan due to unrest in Zahedan and crackdown on protesters.

According to the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), the border crossing at Taftan, about 90 km from Zahedan, has been sealed by the Iranian authorities and no one is being allowed to go from Pakistan to Iran, while on the other side, all types of movement have been stopped.

A Levies Force officer told that the Iranian authorities late Friday night verbally informed the local administration about closure of the border, but no time frame was given in this regard.

Local sources said that the Iranian authorities fear that people injured during the protests will be shifted to the other side of the border for treatment. In view of this fear, the border connecting East Balochistan with West Balochistan has been sealed and people have been prevented from crossing it from either side.

According to the sources, the decision to close the border has been taken in view of the ongoing military crackdown and raging protests in Western Balochistan.

It is noteworthy, that during the last Friday prayer, the Friday Imam of Rask, Molavi Abdul Ghaffar Naghshbandi, had alleged that a senior officer of the Iranian forces, Colonel Ebrahim Kouchakzaei, had detained a young Baloch girl on the pretext of investigation, while the girl was in custody, he sexually assaulted her.

After that, a series of demonstrations began in various areas of Western Balochistan, on Friday, September 30, people also demonstrated in Zahedan after Friday prayers. Regional sources allege that the Iranian forces opened live fire on the demonstrators during which many people were killed and injured.

During the Zahedan protests, Ali Mousavi, chief commander of the IRGC’s intelligence unit in the province of Sistan-Balochistan and some other personnel of Iranian forces were also killed from the firing of unknown people.

Iran has shut down the communication systems in Zahedan. According to unconfirmed reports, there have been clashes between forces and armed people in many places in Zahedan, while the military helicopters of Iranian forces are flying in the city. All the schools in the city will remain closed until 7 October.

It should be noted that Baloch people live on both sides of the Goldsmid Line, the Baloch nationalist circles living on both sides consider Iran and Pakistan as occupiers and the Goldsmid Line as a fictitious line instead of a border.

According to Baloch nationalists, Goldsmid Line (1871) and McMahon Line (1896) are just an imaginary line which were created by the British authorities to please the Kings of Iran and Afghanistan. 

Source: The Balochistan Post

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