Iran, Afghanistan to boost cooperation in fighting terrorism, illicit drugs

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said Tehran and Kabul have agreed to boost cooperation in the fight against terrorism and drug trafficking.

Speaking Sunday at a joint press conference with his Afghan counterpart, Ashraf Ghani, President Rouhani pointed to his talks with Ghani and said the two sides exchanged views on a host of issues, including ways to combat illicit drugs.

“In this area (campaign against drug trafficking), it was agreed that the two countries develop intelligence and operational cooperation,” the Iranian chief executive said.

Heading a high-ranking delegation, Ghani arrived in Tehran on Sunday morning for an official visit at the invitation of his Iranian counterpart.

Rouhani added that enhanced collaborations in combatting terrorism, violence and extremism in the Middle East, including along the common borders between Iran and Afghanistan, was another issue highlighted and agreed upon by the two presidents in the meeting.

In recent decades, Iran has been hit by drug trafficking, mainly because of its 936-kilometer shared border with Afghanistan, which produces more than 90% of the world’s opium.

According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, the Islamic Republic is netting eight times more opium and three times more heroin than all other countries in the world combined.

The war on drug trade originating from Afghanistan has claimed the lives of nearly 3,700 Iranian police officers over the past 30 years.

By Tasnim News Agency