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Iran’s main border crossing with Afghanistan temporarily shut

File photo shows a border guard at Dogharoun crossing located 18 kilometers off the eastern Iranian border with Afghanistan.

Iran has temporarily closed its main border crossing with Afghanistan over what authorities described as Afghanistan’s uncoordinated move to build a road along the frontier.

Iran’s official IRNA news agency said that Dogharoun crossing located 18 kilometers off the eastern Iranian border with Afghanistan had been closed since earlier on Saturday.

It said the decision had come after some border disputes emerged between Iranian and Afghan authorities.

The semi-official Tasnim news agency said trucks waiting for border clearance at Dogharoun had been transferred to parking spaces at a safe distance from the frontier.

It said customs services had been suspended temporarily and staff would only respond to emergency calls at the crossing.

The closure came after reports suggested that Iranian border guards had entered the Afghan territory to stop the construction of a road that authorities said had not been coordinated with the Iranian side.

Iranian president’s special envoy to Afghanistan Hassan Kazemi Ghomi said that Iran had submitted a protest to the Taliban’s ministry of interior to inform the group that any construction project near the border needed the approval of a joint border committee.

Kazemi Ghomi rejected reports about clashes on the border between Iranian and Afghan forces and said that the Iranian border guards had intervened in the construction operation to prevent the violation of the frontier.

Dogharoun is the main trade gateway between Iran and Afghanistan. It has seen a surge in shipments crossing from Iran into Afghanistan in recent months.

Government figures show that Afghanistan has remained one of five main importers of Iranian goods even after the rise of the Taliban in August.

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