Fire destroys 100 fuel tankers on Afghanistan-Iran border, probe launched

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Islam Qala: At least 100 oil and gasoline tankers have been destroyed by an inferno at Afghanistan’s greatest commerce crossing with Iran, inflicting thousands and thousands of {dollars} of losses, officers mentioned Sunday.

The large blaze, which broke out Saturday afternoon at Islam Qala port 120 kilometres (75 miles) from the western metropolis of Herat, has largely been extinguished and an investigation has been launched to probe its trigger.

“We were told that 100 or 200 tankers have been destroyed, but this number could be higher. We need more time to find out the extent of the damage,” Jailani Farhad, the spokesman for the governor of Herat province mentioned after visiting the scene.

Around 20 folks injured within the fireplace have been taken to hospital, he added.

Videos posted on social media present towering flames and large clouds of thick black smoke billowing into the sky.

The finance ministry mentioned preliminary studies have been that the hearth began in a tanker earlier than rapidly spreading, inflicting “heavy financial losses”, together with of fuel, tankers and customs amenities.

A delegation has been despatched from the capital Kabul to research the blaze, the ministry added.

Younus Qazi Zada, the pinnacle of the Herat Chamber of Commerce, on Saturday mentioned preliminary estimates have been of “millions of dollars of losses”.

Large elements of Herat province have been with out energy on Sunday.

Islam Qala is among the main ports in Afghanistan, by way of which most official commerce with Iran is performed.

Afghanistan has obtained waivers from Washington permitting it to import oil and gasoline from Iran regardless of US sanctions.

Iran overseas ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh mentioned the border “was held open for trucks, cars and people running from the fire” in the direction of Iran.

Afghan authorities referred to as on Iran for assist after saying it didn’t have the required sources to sort out the blaze alone.

Fire providers from each nations have been on the scene extinguishing small fires that also stay, Farhad mentioned.

He added that Taliban insurgents attacked a close-by safety publish shortly after the blaze broke out.

Security forces have been deployed across the port to stop any looting.

Afghanistan has been hit by a surge in violence regardless of peace talks that began in September between the Taliban and the Afghan authorities, which have up to now failed to realize a breakthrough.

The rise in violence has led US President Joe Biden’s administration to launch a overview of a deal signed between Washington and the Taliban final yr that paved the way in which for the withdrawal of all American troops within the coming months.

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