In a Monday statement, Saeed Khatibzadeh said their bodies have been recovered and will be transferred to Iran after the necessary arrangements are made.
“Based on the details received from relevant organizations, following an avalanche when five Iranian koolbars (people carrying goods across the border over their back, usually across rough terrain and mountainous areas) went missing on the Iran-Turkey border, the [Iranian] foreign ministry made phone contacts and met our country’s consul general in Erzurum, and the Contingency Headquarters in the [Iranian] West Azerbaijan Province followed up on the issue,” said the spokesman.
“Iran sent two memos to Turkish officials, one from Iran’s Embassy in Ankara and the other from the General Consular Department to the Turkish Embassy in Tehran, requesting permission for a search team from the Iranian Red Crescent Society to be sent to the site of the incident and [requesting] Turkish forces cooperate with them to find the bodies of the missing Iranians,” he added.
“Of course, these efforts will continue until their bodies are transferred to Iran,” Khatibzadeh said.
“Border officials have always urged Iranian nationals to avoid illegally crossing the border, so that, given the conditions in the area, they will not run into problems similar to the one these five fellow countrymen faced,” he said.
Khatibzadeh also expressed his gratitude to border authorities and the Turkish Red Crescent Society for cooperating to establish the fate of those five Iranians.