Baghdad, Aug 20 - Some 100 Iranians holding fake Afghan identity cards were arrested on August 8 in Diyala Province, bordering Iran, according to sources in the area. They crossed the border illegally and entered Iraqi territory and initial investigations showed they had ties with the Iranian regimes security services.
On August 3, three Iranians were arrested by the Iraqi National Guard near the town of Mandali, close to the Iranian border. They are named as Mohammad Sarkhad, Ali Rashad and Hossein Benali. All three were working for the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS).
Seven other MOIS agents of Iranian and Afghan extraction were arrested in a separate incident on August 5 in the Mandali region.
Also on August 5, about two dozen Iranian who had illegally crossed into Iraq at Munduriah border area were arrested. Under interrogation, they said they intended to join the jihad against the Americans and their allies in Iraq and intended to go to Najaf.
On August 4, three Iranians identified as Mohammad, Jassem and Hossein, were arrested by Iraqi police near Khanaqin. They were carrying rocket-propelled grenades and handguns, as well narcotics.
On August 4, two Iranians holding Iraqi identity cards were arrested by Iraqi police near Jalula, as they were using portable communication equipment to contact their headquarters in Qasr-e Shirin, on the Iranian side of the border.
On August 7, Iraqi police in Sulaymanieh stopped and searched an Iranian, Hamdi Amini, from Paveh who owns a shop in Sulaymanieh. They discovered that he was carrying some 30 kg of explosives. Amini remains under arrest.
In response to the massive infiltration of borders by Iranian agents, Iraqi police is beefing up its presence along parts of the 1,200-km border. Brigadier General Nazem Sharif, head of the Diyala Province Central Police, said: 600 Iraqi policemen have been stationed along the Iran-Iraq border to stop different kinds of smuggling. They are patrolling along 120 km of the border in Qara-Tu region and north of the Hanjira checkpoint in southern Diyala Province.
The growing meddling in Iraq by the Iranian regime has become a matter of public clashes between the two countries. Iraqs interior minister, Fallah Naqib, told Al-Jazeera television on August 16, The recent developments in Najaf are a conspiracy and a war against Iraq by a foreign country. The incidents Iraq is witnessing, including those in Najaf, are conducted according to a plan and with the briefing of a government with high capabilities. We have arrested a number of Libyans, Afghans and Iranians who were suspected of involvement in terrorist acts.
Asked if Iran played a prominent role in the turmoil in Iraq, Naqib said, "Yes, the Iranians have infiltrated here, very much. [Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad"> Allawi will raise this issue with the government of that country during his visit to Tehran.