One officer killed in attack on police station in restive Iran province bordering Pakistan

DUBAI (Reuters): At least one policeman was killed as unidentified gunmen and suicide bombers attacked a police station in Iran’s restive southeast on Saturday, Iranian state media reported.

The official news agency IRNA quoted a prosecutor in Zahedan, capital of the Sistan-Baluchistan province, as saying that shooting continued at the police station.

State television said two attackers had detonated their explosive belts entrance of the station and a third had gone inside. “It is said that one or two policemen have been martyred,” a TV correspondent said.

Alireza Marhemati, a top provincial security official, denied suicide bombers were involved. “They used grenades to enter and it was not a suicide operation,” he told state TV.

Sistan-Baluchistan, bordering Pakistan and Afghanistan, is one of Iran’s poorest provinces and a major drug trafficking route. It has seen repeated killings by security forces in recent years.

Human rights groups say the Baluch minority, estimated to number up to 2 million people, has faced discrimination and repression for decades.