An Iranian security official on Thursday denied that police shooting was responsible for a vehicle fire in Yazd Province that killed at least three Afghan citizens and wounded several others.
Speaking to the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) on Thursday evening, Ahmad Tarahomi-Behabadi, Law Enforcement Commander of Yazd Province, claimed that the vehicle caught fire due to overheating of its wheels and crashed into the guard rail in the middle of the road.
Three passengers who were in the vehicle burned to death and eight were wounded he said and claimed that "it had nothing to do with the bullets fired at the car".
This Pashtun-language tweet claims that seven burned to death in this vehicle.
According to Tarahomi-Behabadi, the vehicle was one of the three in a convoy carrying both illegal migrants and narcotics. The police stopped the convoy, arrested some of the illegal migrants [Afghan citizens] and discovered some drugs, and one of the vehicles in the convoy drove away at high speed even after police warning despite having a punctured tire.
The commander said the driver lost control of the car when its wheels started burning due to overheating and crashed into the guard rail in the middle of the road eight kilometers away from the police checkpoint. "It had nothing to do with the bullet fired at the car," he said.
He said the passengers of the vehicles were "foreign citizens", a term usually used by officials to refer to Afghan citizens including refugees and illegal migrants who work in Iran.
The Afghan Tolo news agency has reported that the Foreign Ministry of Afghanistan has confirmed the death of three citizens and dispatched a delegation from the embassy in Tehran to Yazd Province to investigate the matter.