KABUL (TOLO News): The bodies of 28 Afghan refugees on Friday were repatriated to the southwestern province of Nimroz of Afghanistan from Iran, local officials confirmed.
The refugees died “in a traffic accident” in an attempt to travel “illegally” to Turkey, said Mohammad Ibrahim Amini, head of the Nimroz Police media office.
The accident occurred when two vans collided near the town of Khash in Sistan and Baluchistan, according to AP, and 21 passengers were injured as well.
Ibrahimi said most of those killed in the accident are from the western province of Ghor.
Last week the incident was reported by Iranian officials, who said 28 people were killed and 30 others were wounded.
According to the Nimroz Provincial Council, quoted by DW, most of the refugees are from Ghor while others are from Farah and Badakhshan provinces.
The council said that the age of the refugees ranged from 14 to 45 years old.
Iran hosts almost two million refugees from Afghanistan who seek refuge there in search of work, AP reports, and the area is frequently used by traffickers to smuggle illegal Afghan migrants, usually in overcrowded vehicles.
Also according to AP, Iran has one of the “world’s worst traffic safety records,” due to “disregard of traffic laws, unsafe vehicles and inadequate emergency services,” and each year approximately “17,000 people die in accidents in Iran.”