A group of kolbars was targeted by the Iranian border guards without any prior warning at the Hange Jale of Baneh on Friday, December 14, which resulted in the death of a kolbar and injury of another one.

Kurdistan Human Rights Network (KHRN) has been informed that the border guards in Baneh opened fire on a caravan of the Kolbars at Hange Jale border region of Baneh without any prior warning, on December 14, which resulted in the death of a 45-year-old Kolbar, Rahman Ketabi and injury of a 20-year-old Kolbar, Mohammad Maroufi.

According to information provided to KHRN, upon visiting Baneh border guarders, the commander of the Iranian border guards personally ordered Baneh border guards to target all illegal travellers crossing the border. The media affiliated with Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) referred to the statement of this commander as “Ultimatum of border guards to Illegal travellers crossing the border”.

Last week, KHRN broadcasted a video about the latest statement of this commander, Sardar Qasem Rezaie who has defended the killing of kolbars by the border guards while stating that commuters illegally crossing the borders will be shot by border guards.

Sardar Qasem Rezaie referred to kolbars as “smugglers” while maintaining that “smuggling” of goods is not a job and anyone illegally crossing the borders steps over the “red line” of border guards. In other words, Qasem Rezaie believes that the border guards are merely conforming to the regulations and supports their action.

Two kolbars Ghader Bahrami, 41 years old and father of four, and 22-years old Heydar Faraji, single from Vazmaleh village of Baneh, were both killed by the direct shooting of Iranian border guards last year on August 13. Both men were reportedly not carrying goods and were simply crossing the border. Following the death of these two Kolbars, several cities in Kurdistan witnessed street protests for a few days.