Friday, July 1, 2016

U.S. Identifies Nine Training Camps in Iran for Afghans


IRGC

U.S. Identifies Nine Training Camps in Iran for Afghans




BY: Bill Gertz
July 1, 2016


U.S. intelligence agencies recently identified nine training camps inside Iran where jihadists from Afghanistan are being schooled for fighting in Syria, according to U.S. defense officials.

The camps are part of a large-scale paramilitary training program run by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), Islamic shock troops, to battle Syrian rebels opposing the regime of Bashar al Assad that Tehran is backing.

The camps were identified in satellite photographs located in areas of northeastern Iran close to the Iraqi border, said officials familiar with intelligence reports of the training.

Iran is predominantly Shiite Islam and the Afghan fighters are mostly Shiite refugees who settled in Iran over the past several years.

A State Department official said he was aware of the reports. “If true, it would be a cruel exploitation of a group of vulnerable people already living in a precarious situation as refugees,” the official said. “And it would be another unfortunate reminder of the depths to which Iran is willing to go to continue to prop up the Assad regime.”





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