By Ayya Lmahamad
Azerbaijan’s State Border Service has denied the allegations that the country’s territory is being used for intelligence purposes against Iran.
The statement was made following the recent information in the Iranian media, particularly, an interview with the commander of the Iranian Border Guard Commander Brig-Gen Ahmed Ali Goudarzi, who made statements that did not correspond to the reality.
“There has never been, is not and will never be a third force on Azerbaijan’s state border. The allegations that Azerbaijan’s territory is used for intelligence purposes against Iran and that representative of a religious extremist movement operate there are false,” the Azerbaijani State Border Service said.
The statement noted that the State Border Service, which has the most modern facilities, does not need the support of foreign forces to reliably guard and protect Azerbaijan’s state border.
It stressed that ensuring the border and customs control on the Gorus-Gafan section of the road passing through the Azerbaijani territory on the state border with Armenia is Azerbaijan's sovereign right.
“Despite the fact that Azerbaijani and Iranian border guards periodically hold working meetings at different levels and exchange information, until today the Azerbaijani side has not been given any information contained in Ali Gudarzi’s interview,” the statement read.
The State Border Service emphasized that at present, the operational situation on the state border with Iran is stable and fully controlled by Azerbaijani border guards.
“Any provocations on the state border against the state interest of Azerbaijan will be further suppressed. We recommend Iranian officials to be more responsible and urge them to refrain from spreading false and slanderous information,” the statement underlined.
Iran's very inadequate behavior in the past couple of weeks has flared up tension in its relations with neighbor Azerbaijan. Baku started charging customs fees for Iran's trucks illegally passing to Karabakh through the Gorus-Gafan road, the only motorway connecting Armenia to Iran. Baku had to take the step after its relevant protests were ignored by Tehran. The move was ensued by Iran's massive military drills near its border with Azerbaijan.
It is noteworthy that Iran's state circles, officials, MPs and the media still continue their aggressive rhetoric against Azerbaijan, claiming about an alleged Israeli presence near its border, which Baku officially dismissed as unfounded.
Ayya Lmahamad is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @AyyaLmahamad
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