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Iran seizes Iraqi boats, crew

10 May 2010 3:25

Six Iraqi boats and their 12 crew members have been captured by Iranian border guard forces for illegally entering Iran’s territorial waters in the Arvand River.

Iranian border guards stopped the Iraqi vessels, which were disguised as fishing boats, and transferred them to an Iranian coastal pier, Fars News Agency reports.

Twelve vessel crews have been escorted to an Iranian border unit base for questioning, said Iranian Boarder Guard Commander Yadollad Sharaffi in an interview. He also reiterated that his forces would not allow anyone to cross into Iranian territory illegally.

The Arvand River is a 200-Kilometer long stretch of water, also known as Shatt-al-Arab in Arabic, at the Iran-Iraq border.

Both countries have long sought to establish a clear marking of their borders along the long stream with a varying width of 400 to 1500 meters.

Technical teams from Iran and Iraq are currently working on the issue. An initial meeting was held last February 20 in the western Iranian border city of Qasr-e-Shirin.

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