Protests in Afghanistan over the blockade of transiting fuel trucks have spread to the western city of Herat where protesters gathered in front of the Iranian consulate chanting slogans in condemnation of Iran’s supreme leader and president.
According to Zamaneh correspondent in Afghanistan, despite Iranian complaints to the Afghan government regarding demonstrations in front of its embassy in Kabul, demonstrators have been chanting “Death to Khamenei!" and "Death to Ahmadinejad!” in front of Iranian consulate in Herat for since yesterday.
The spokesman for Heart province said traders, angered by fuel shortages and the consequent sudden rise in transport and food prices, are amongst the street protesters in Herat.
Over 1900 fuel trucks have been stopped by Iranian authorities from crossing into Afghanistan in over a month. Iran maintains that it is concerned that the fuel is headed for NATO forces but NATO and Afghan authorities deny this and claim the fuel is solely for civilian use.
In the past two weeks, Iranian embassy in Kabul has faced several angry demonstrations in condemnation of the fuel blockade.
Iranian ambassador in Afghanistan has called for the identification and prosecution of the perpetrators of these protests.
Rafi Ferdous, an Afghan media official has responded to the ambassador’s request saying: “Kabul is not Tehran and according to the Afghan constitution, citizens have the right to express their protests regarding anything.”
In the past week, Iranian foreign ministry announced that the issue of transiting fuel trucks has been resolved and the trucks have already crossed into Afghanistan. However, Afghan officials say that despite all agreements, the trucks are still being stopped in Iran.