SULAIMANI (ESTA) — At least seven Kurdish Kolbars (porters) have been killed or died in areas on the border of Iran with Iraq and Turkey in the past month, according to a rights watchdog.
Hengaw Organization for Human Rights said in a report on Tuesday that Iranian forces shot dead three Kolbars in the Kurdish areas in Iran in February.
Four other Kolbars died due to natural incidents, said the organization, which monitors human rights abuses in Iranian Kurdistan.
At least nine other Kolbars were wounded by Iranian forces or because of natural incidents, the rights watchdog added.
The cases took place in Urmia, Sanandaj and Kermanshah, according to the organization.
Kolbars carry goods across the mountainous border between Iran, Iraq and Turkey on their backs. They frequently come under fire from Iranian border guards.
According to the organization, 59 Kolbars died or were shot dead by Iranian security forces and 181 others were wounded in 2020.