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Iran Asks Pakistan To Deal With 'Terrorists' Who Abducted Revolutionary Guards

RFE/RL's Radio Farda, RFE/RL's Radio Mashaal October 16, 2018

Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) has called on Pakistan to tackle suspected militants who kidnapped 14 members of Iranian security forces on October 16 on their shared border.

"We expect Pakistan to confront these terrorist groups that are supported by some regional states and immediately release the kidnapped Iranian forces," the IRGC said in a statement carried on state television.

Two of those abducted were members of the elite IRGC intelligence unit, according to media reports. The rest reportedly included seven volunteers in the Basij militia, as well as regular Iranian border guards.

Pakistan's Foreign Ministry later said in a statement that the Pakistani and Iranian militaries were "working to ascertain the whereabouts of Iranian guards," adding that "no effort will be spared" to assist Iran in finding the abducted.

Iranian state media earlier reported that 14 border guards, including IRGC intelligence officers, were kidnapped on the southeastern border with Pakistan.

The official IRNA news agency said the border guards were "abducted between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m. in the Lulakdan area of the border by a terrorist group."

Lulakdan is located 150 kilometers southeast of Zahedan, capital of the southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchistan.

The reports did not name a specific group as a suspect in the abduction.

The area has seen occasional clashes between Iranian forces and Baluch separatists, as well as drug traffickers.

In September, militants disguised as soldiers opened fire on a military parade in Iran's oil-rich southwest, killing 24 people and wounding more than 60.

With reporting by Reuters and AFP

Source: https://www.rferl.org/a/iranian-guards-reportedly- seized-on-pakistan-border/29546054.html

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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