Iranian Daily raises security alarm over growing number of Afghan refugees in Iran

The influx of refugees to Iran after the takeover of the Taliban in neighboring Afghanistan is posing a security challenge for Iran, a leading Iranian newspaper has warned.

Johmouri-e Eslami, in an article on Monday, wrote that the increasing number of Afghans who seek refuge in Iran can provide the ground for terrorist attacks similar to the deadly incidents in the southern Iranian shrine of Shah Cheragh on August 13 this year, and October last year, perpetrated by Daesh-affiliated foreign nationals.

The Tehran-based daily also said the refugees are straining the country’s shrinking resources amid crippling Western sanctions.

“In a month in the fall last year, out of 300 deliveries and births in the hospital of Kavar, 40 kilometers away from (the southern city of) Shiraz, only 3 deliveries were for Iranians, and the rest of the deliveries were carried out by Afghans,” Johmouri-e Eslami wrote, citing unofficial data.

Iranians increasingly perceive undocumented Afghans as a threat to security and society, as there are concerns about radicalization among Afghan refugees.

Government figures put the number of Afghan refugees in Iran at five million, a vast majority of them undocumented.

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