Department of the Environment says 35 percent of the coral reefs in the Chabahar section of the Persian Gulf in Sistan-Baluchistan Province have been destroyed.

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Saeed Mahmoudi, the head of the Sistan-Baluchistan Department of the Environment, referred to the destruction of the coral reefs in the Chabahar Gulf as an “environmental catastrophe”.

He stated that the destruction of over 35 percent of the corals is due to dredging activities linked to construction at the Shahid Beheshti Port.

The expansion of the Shahid Beheshti Port is of prime commercial and strategic importance to Iran, as the activities are aimed at turning the port into a top trading centre able to compete with other ports in the region, specifically the Port of Dubai.

Mahmoudi stated that persistent monitoring and protective activities in the area may help to save the remaining portions of coral reefs in the region.