Iranian security and intelligence forces have managed to seize two cargoes of narcotics amounting to more than 4,000 kilograms in the southern province of Kerman, the prosecutor general of the province said.
Following intelligence measures by the security forces, two major drug rings operating inside and outside of the country were identified and smashed, Dadkhoda Salari said on Tuesday.
The drug dealers intended to smuggle the cargos from the neighboring province of Sistan and Balouchestan into Kerman, he added.
During the operations to arrest the drug smugglers, over 4 tons of illicit drugs, including 4,161 kg of opium, 21 kg of morphine and 10 kg of heroin, were seized and 9 members of the drug gangs were detained, the judicial official said.
Iran, which has a 900-kilometer common border with Afghanistan, has been used as the main conduit for smuggling Afghan drugs to narcotics kingpins in Europe.
Despite high economic and human costs, the Islamic Republic has been actively fighting drug-trafficking over the past three decades.
The country has spent more than $700 million on sealing its borders and preventing the transit of narcotics destined for European, Arab and Central Asian countries.
The war on drug trade originating from Afghanistan has claimed the lives of nearly 4,000 Iranian police officers over the past 34 years.