3 killed, several injured in terrorist attack in Iran’s Chabahar port

Chabahar in Iran's Sistan and Balochestan province is located near the border with Pakistan

Chabahar in Iran's Sistan and Balochestan province is located near the border with Pakistan

Images posted on Twitter purported to show thick smoke rising from the area.

An official told TV that "the terrorist who carried out the attack was killed".

"The terrorists exploded a auto carrying explosives at the gate of the [police] headquarters", Bameri was quoted as saying by the official government news agency IRNA. A year ago, the group claimed to have blown up an oil pipeline in Iran's southern Khuzestan province.

Meanwhile, Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi also denounced the "malicious and inhumane terror attack, which he said was aimed at disrupting Iran's economic development, which is underway in cooperation with regional states".

Ansar al-Furqan is known to operate in Iran's southeastern Sistan and Baluchistan Province, which sees occasional attacks by Baluch separatists and drug traffickers.

In October, the separatist Jaish al-Adl (Army of Justice) group kidnapped 12 Iranian border guards in the remote province, five of whom have since been released.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, blamed Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates for the attack, allegations denied by both countries.

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"Foreign-backed terrorists kill & wound innocents in Chabahar".

Iran Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif condemned the attack and warned "terrorists" that they will be punished.

Chabahar lies some 100 kilometres (60 miles) west of the Pakistan border and is home to a large Balochi community which straddles the two countries.

Chabahar has a deep-water port on the Gulf of Oman and with Indian assistance Iran has been developing it as a major energy and freight hub between Central Asia and India, bypassing Pakistan.

He was apparently referring to a highly successful operation by Iranian intelligence services, which led to the capture in 2010 of Abdolmalek Rigi, the ringleader of the so-called Jundullah terror group.

Such acts of violence will also "boost the Islamic Republic of Iran's resolve to fight terrorism", said Jahangiri, calling for all-out efforts to identify the perpetrators and bring them to justice.

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