In the past four weeks the Iranian police have killed at least six Kolbers and tradesmen accused of “smuggling”.

Kolbers ( cross-border courier workers ) is the Kurdish name used to describe poor workers who carry items on their backs to cross the borders and they have no choice other than this job.

Iranian police opened fired on a group of Kolbers in Machak village in the Chalderan area killing 25-year-old Naser Dalaie and 27-year old Mostafa Nouri on 25 October, according to field reports submitted to KHRN.

Witnesses said that the bodies of the two killed Kolbers were dragged behind the police cars all the way from the scene where they were shot dead to the police station.

Another incident took place on 27 October when on the main road between Bijar and Zanjan the police opened fire on cars of two Kurdish tradesmen from Saqqez and killed 25-year-old Mansour Abbasi and 28-year-old Faramarz Rashidi.

On 16 November, the police officers from Aqaberar station located in the city of Qasre Shirin, opened fire on a truck claiming that the truck was “smuggling” gas.

As the result of this shooting, one of the passengers Saied Jamali was killed on the scene and another two were arrested.

Saied, 21, a Kurd, had finished his conscription a month prior to his slaying.

Furthermore, he was the breadwinner of his family since his father had passed away.

Following the news of Saied’s death, his mother was transferred to the hospital due to a panic attack.

A KHRN source said that Saied’s family had to pay the authorities money for the bullets used to kill their son in order to collect his body from the police station.

The deputy mayor of Qasre Shirin claimed that these people were “gangs” and the reason why Saied was killed is that the bullet had “ricocheted due to bumpy and uneven roads”.

However, witnesses said that the officers shot the truck directly while the three of the young men were trading gas.

Also, on 22 Novembe, on the outskirts of Qazvin, the police shot the car of Malmal Hamalawi, a Kurdish tradesman from Mahabad, on the highway outside of Qazvin and killed him.

The authorities have not yet returned his body to his family.