Iranian border guards clashed with Taliban forces along the Iran-Afghanistan border on Wednesday after the Taliban opened fire on Iranian farmers, according to reports.
Local journalist Reza Khaasteh shared unverified video of the scene on Twitter, which appeared to show Iranian soldiers using heavy artillery to push back against the Taliban militants.
Khaasteh tweeted that the Taliban managed to capture several Iranian border posts; however, other reports citing unnamed sources claimed that was false, Gandhara reported.
“#BREAKING Fierce clashes have erupted between Iranian border guards and Taliban forces along Iran-Afghanistan border,” Khaasteh tweeted. “Sources told @aamajnews24 several Iranian border posts have been captured by Taliban fighters.”
According to Khaasteh, the shooting started as a result of a “misunderstanding” and since the shooting ended, the Iranians have been communicating with the Taliban on exactly where the two nation’s borders are located.
“Iran has apparently built walls in its own territory to block the entry/exit of drug traffickers. Today a group of Iranian farmers crossed those walls, but were still in Iran’s territory. Taliban started shooting at them, and that caused Iran border guards to get involved,” Khaasteh tweeted.
Other reports claimed the clash was between “armed bandits” and Iran border guards, not the Taliban.
“Apparently in an attempt to clear Taliban of any blame, the other IRGC-linked media, Fars News, gives a totally different account of today’s clashes: Iran border guards repelled ‘armed bandits’ who had launched an attack because of ‘farm disputes,’ Khaasteh tweeted. “No mention of Taliban!”
“Fars News: Taliban’s ‘official’ border guards have not yet been deployed in the areas where today’s clashes erupted. The Taliban government is expected to immediately take action against perpetrators. Iran is ready to provide military training for Taliban’s border guards,” Khaasteh tweeted, apparently translating the Fars News report.
Aggression from Iran and its affiliates has been seen in other areas of the middle east.
Last month, Houthi rebels backed by Iran breached the U.S. Embassy compound in Yemen and 25 local embassy employees were taken hostage, the U.S. State Department confirmed.
State Department spokesperson Ned Price later confirmed to Fox News that the embassy compound was breached and that the department was working towards the release of the hostages, who were detained “without explanation.”
While U.S. personnel have been gone for years, local employees have continued to work for the embassy either from home or as security guards at the embassy compound.
“We call on the Houthis to immediately vacate it and return all seized property,” Price said. “The U.S. government will continue its diplomatic efforts to secure the release of our staff and the vacating of our compound, including through our international partners.”