Last Updated: Tue Nov 02, 2010 17:35 pm (KSA) 14:35 pm (GMT)

Iran detains 10 spies near Pakistan border: TV

Iran’s Intelligence minister Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejei (File)
Iran’s Intelligence minister Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejei (File)

Iran detained 10 spies carrying $500,000 in cash who had entered the Islamic Republic illegally from neighboring Pakistan, state television said on Saturday.

Modern espionage cameras and maps of sensitive regions in Iran were found when the group was detained in Iran's south-eastern Sistan-Baluchestan province bordering Pakistan, the report said.

Iran has in the past accused the United States and Britain of trying to destabilize the country by supporting ethnic minority rebels operating in sensitive border areas.

Television did not give any details on the 10 alleged spies’ nationality or say when they were detained.

Earlier in the week Iran’s Intelligence minister Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejei was quoted by the semi-official Fars News Agency of saying that "over the last two months, Western intelligence agencies have set new priorities in Iran."

"Until two months ago, Western intelligence services focused on Iran's [general] elections, but today they are working on finding ways to foment discord inside the country," Ejei added.

Sistan-Baluchestan is a volatile province known for frequent clashes between security forces and well-armed drug smugglers.

The United States is leading efforts to isolate Iran over its nuclear program, which the West fears is a cover for a drive to build nuclear bombs. Tehran says it wants only to generate electricity.

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