Iran Ready to Reopen Khosravi Border Crossing with Iraq
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iranian interior minister voiced the country’s preparedness to reopen its Khosravi border crossing with neighboring Iraq, saying the Arab country seems unprepared due to the security challenges it is grappling with these days.
“In general, we are ready to reopen the border crossing and have repeatedly said this to the Iraqi government, but the other side is not prepared yet,” Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli said on Saturday.
Located in the western province of Kermanshah, Khosravi is one of several border crossings between Iran and Iraq. It lies 180 km away from the Iraqi capital of Baghdad.
In recent years, the border crossing has been intermittently closed over security concerns after a number of terrorist incidents targeted Iranian pilgrims on their way to holy religious sites in Iraq.
Gripped by raging violence and uncontrollable terrorist incidents, Iraq is now faced with a new serious threat, namely the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) insurgents.
ISIL militants, who want to establish a caliphate straddling Iraq and Syria, have stormed largely unopposed across much of northern Iraq, capturing four cities, including Mosul and Tikrit, seizing several border crossings with Jordan and Syria and advancing to within some 100 km of the capital Baghdad.
The terrorist attacks have reportedly forced more than half a million people in Nineveh Province to flee their homes.