- ‘Rebels’ from unspecified group clashed with guards according to source
- Troops have been ambushed by drug smugglers at the border in the past
- Reports from Iran do not mention whether hanged men had a recent trial
PUBLISHED: 16:14, 26 October 2013 | Daily Mail
Iranian officials hanged 16 ‘rebels’ in revenge for the deaths of 14 guards in clashes near the border with Pakistan.
The executions took place on Saturday, hours after the rebels ambushed the border guards near the town of Saravan in southeast Iran.
State TV said that rebels had crossed the border from Pakistan and fled back there after the clash.
The border is easily accessible which makes the area popular with a number of ‘rebel’ groups according to Fars Agency.
In the past drug smugglers have ambushed Iranian troops in the mountainous area, which straddles a major transit route linking Afghanistan to Europe and the Persian Gulf.
Ethnic Baluch armed groups also operate there, but have not been active recently.
The report does not mention a trial for the hanged men, suggesting that sentenced prisoners had their execution dates moved forward after the clashes.
The state news agency IRNA described the attackers as ‘bandits’, and said authorities were investigating whether the attackers were drug smugglers or an armed opposition group.
Meanwhile an Iranian official said that authorities would investigate claims that the daughter of detained opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi was assaulted by a female guard when she went to visit him.
IRNA quoted an unnamed security official as saying that the Intelligence Ministry, which supervises the detentions of the elder Mousavi and his wife, will investigate any failures or fault by the guard.
However, the official said Mousavi’s daughter was at fault in the incident, claiming that she insulted and attacked the guard.
The opposition website reported the abuse allegations, by Nargess Mousavi.
She said the guard demanded that she and her sister be strip searched after visiting her parents, who have been under house arrest since early 2011.
On Friday Nargess Mousavi claims the guard struck her in the head and bit her on the wrist after she refused to be searched.
Her parents, and fellow opposition figure Mahdi Karroubi, were placed under house arrest after leading protests in 2009 over the disputed re-election of then-President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.