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Afghans Protest Against Iran Over Executions

Afghans in Herat Province demonstrate against executions of refugees in Iran.
JALALABAD, Afghanistan (Reuters) -- Around 1,000 Afghans demonstrated today against alleged ill-treatment and executions of some Afghan refugees by Iranian authorities on charges of drug-smuggling.

The protesters threw eggs at the gate of Tehran's consulate in the eastern city of Jalalabad and burnt down an effigy of Iran's spiritual leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

"We want an end to the execution of Afghans. We expect Iran to not treat Afghans badly," a protest leader said as police tried to control the crowd.

The demonstration ended peacefully after a couple of hours.

Iran has been host to millions of Afghan refugees since the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s and later during the civil war in 1990s. In recent years it has been deporting some of them back to Afghanistan.

Tehran has confirmed that it has recently sent some Afghan refugees to the gallows on drug smuggling charges, and hundreds more are reported to be on death row.

Some Afghan lawmakers say dozens of Afghans have been executed in Iran in recent weeks and there has been a series of protests against the death penalty.