US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday that the Afghan government should pursue the case of Afghan refugees drowned by Iranian border forces.
Addressing a press conference, he said that he was sudden to see reports last week of “Iranian guards on the border of Afghanistan’s Herat province abused, tortured, and drowned Afghan migrants who dared to cross the border simply in search of food and work.”
“We encourage the Afghan authorities to undertake a full investigation and to seek to hold those perpetrators accountable,” he emphasized.
The European Union in Afghanistan has also expressed its concern over the matter, tweeting, “EU alarmed by reported fate of Afghan migrants at the border with Iran.” “EU calls for thorough investigations and expects full transparency.
We support the Government of Afghanistan in assisting Afghan returnees from Iran and Pakistan,” the tweet said highlighting “People on the move are human beings!” Also, the Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said that the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has officially assured its Afghan counterpart of a joint investigation into the incident.
It is noteworthy that Iranian border guards Sunday denied reports that they had drowned and killed a number of Afghan migrants crossing into Iran.
BRIEF HISTORY: SINCE 2002, PRESS RESTRICTIONS WERE GRADUALLY RELAXED AND PRIVATE MEDIA DIVERSIFIED. FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION AND THE PRESS IS PROMOTED IN 2004.
SINCE THEN MORE THAN 30 AFGHANISTAN BASED TELEVISION CHANNELS BOTH TERRESTRIAL AND SATELLITE AND AROUND 100 RADIO FM STATIONS STARTED OPERATION IN THE COUNTRY.
FOREIGN RADIO STATIONS, SUCH AS VOICE OF AMERICA AND BBC WORLD SERVICE, ALSO BROADCAST INTO THE COUNTRY.