In report to United Nations, Iran says it's cracking down on terrorism

Thursday, July 11th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

UNITED NATIONS (AP) _ Iran has sent hundreds of soldiers to guard its porous borders with Pakistan and Afghanistan, and it plans tough new anti-terrorism laws in response to the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States, a top Iranian diplomat said.

In a report to a U.N. Security Council committee circulated Wednesday, Mohammed Fadaifard, Iran's deputy U.N. ambassador, said Iran has deployed 15 additional battalions to the Pakistani border and reinforced the Afghan border to prevent illegal border crossings.

Fadaifard said new visa requirements for visitors from other Arab countries are in place to prevent potential terrorists from using Iran as a transit point to and from Afghanistan.

``Iran is intent on stopping the expansion of their control and violence as part of the United Nations effort to help bring back conciliation and normalcy to Afghanistan,'' Fadaifard said in the report.

He also said surveillance has been increased at hotels and residential units in border provinces and the capital, Tehran.

The Iranian report was a response to a Security Council resolution adopted in January requiring all 189 U.N. member states to freeze the finances and impose arms embargoes and travel bans on anyone associated with Osama bin Laden, his al-Qaida network and the Taliban.

About 160 Afghans and Arabs have been arrested due to increased surveillance and security measures in border areas,'' Fadaifard said. Most sympathized with or were connected to al-Qaida or the Taliban, he said.

More than 20,000 Pakistanis and Afghans have been prevented from entering Iran, he said.

Fadaifard said legislation on money laundering and a counterterrorism bill were in the process of being introduced in the Iranian Parliament. He didn't provide any details of the bill.

Last month, the U.S. State Department labeled Iran the world's most active sponsor of terrorism for allegedly boosting aid to Palestinian militants.