Analysis by PMOI/MEK
Iran, Dec. 19, 2018 - Every year, hundreds of thousands of tons of fertile Iranian soil are officially or illegally exported to Persian Gulf countries, especially the United Arab Emirates, where beautiful islands are built with it. This treasonous policy has transformed many fertile parts of the country into deserts that have caused the current dust storm crisis.
Iranian officials don’t even balk at confirming this trend. Shargh Daily website wrote on March 10, 2013: “Earlier, Iran’s ambassador to Doha said that based on a finalized agreement, the Qatari government will import large amounts of fertile soil from Iran to increase its agriculture output.”
On December 15, Ali Moridi, chief of water and soil department in Iran’s environment protection organization, told ISNA news agency that Iran’s soil is trafficked to the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.
According to Moridi, the main destinations for Iranian soil “are Persian Gulf countries, especially UAE and Qatar and in UAE [the soil] is used to create artificial islands and in Qatar to dry the sea.”
The Rouhani-government official didn’t mention the official selling of Iranian soil to these countries, but the fact is that Iranian soil is exported from seaports that are under full control and authority of Iranian officials.
According to the Young Journalist Club on July 27: “In the early 21st century, we had seaports for exporting soil in the Asaluyeh region and the soil was exported to Arabic countries, especially UAE, to create artificial islands.”
Nader Ghazipour, member of parliament from Urmia, acknowledges that the ministry of industry, mine, and trade has issued a license for exporting gravel and sand but “since the gentlemen and officials of the custom department don’t assert enough supervision, fertile soil is exported to Persian Gulf states instead of gravel and sand.”
Fars news agency, close to IRGC, mentions Ghazipour’s statements in an August 27 report and quotes Masoumeh Ebtekar, a member of Rouhani’s cabinet, as saying: “Hormuz Island is one of the beautiful natural attractions of Iran and one of the valuable capacities of the Persian Gulf and unfortunately we’ve witnessed how its soil is trafficked in this region. Therefore, we’ve expressed our concerns in writing a form to the Forests, Range and Watershed Management Organization and the Ministry of Agriculture Jihad.”
Last year, Iranian media published articles writing that Iranian soil is sold to Persian Gulf countries for prices as low as $35 per metric ton while it takes about 600 years for soil to be naturally created.
It isn’t possible to create artificial islands which cover tens of square kilometers with trafficked soil on small smuggler ships.
Donyay-e Madan, an Iranian website that specializes in the mining industry, wrote on April 10: “Every day, 1,500 metric tons of soil are transported from Chahar Sorkh mine in Kerman to Kongan in Bushehr and then exported from there to UAE.”
In addition to artificial islands, Iranian soil is also used to build skyscrapers in Persian Gulf countries.
Hamshahri newspaper published an article on July 23 titled “Neighboring counties build skyscrapers with smuggled Iranian soil” and wrote: “They sell the motherland’s soil and transport it across the sea, package after package, destined for Persian Gulf countries… One of the most famous cases of smuggling Iranian soil to the Persian Gulf countries belongs to the Hormuz Island. Red soil which profiteers easily scrape and sell. Aside from mining soil which is sold legally, a significant part of the sold soil which is normal fertile soil has been used to create artificial islands in Arab countries. The same countries which have become tourist attractions for Iranians.”
And that’s not the end of the story. In addition to selling out fertile soil, the Iranian regime is also selling Iranian potable water to Iraq and Kuwait, while Iranian farmers are protesting continuously—in Isfahan for instance—against a shortage of water for their needs.
The policy of selling fertile oil and potable water is considered one the most anti-Iranian acts of a kleptocracy that is already among the top corrupt governments in the world.