Allegations that Azerbaijani territories are being used to gather intelligence against Iran are false, the State Border Service of Azerbaijan said in a statement, reported Trend News Agency on Monday.
“There have never been, and never will be, third-party forces on the state border of Azerbaijan. Rumors that Azerbaijan is using its territories for intelligence purposes against Iran and that representatives of a religious extremist movement are active there is false,” the statement read.
Iranian media had recently published an interview with the commander of the country’s Border Guard Commander Brigadier-General Ahmed Ali Goudarzi, who said that Israeli espionage in Azerbaijan is being "fully monitored."
The brigadier-general stated that Israelis had stationed themselves in significant and “sensitive locations” in Azerbaijan, with intentions to spy on Iran, according to a report by Al Mayadeen.
The State Border Service emphasized that border and customs control on the section of the Gorus-Gafan road passing through the Azerbaijani territory on the border with Armenia is a sovereign right belonging to Baku.
“There are no forces and specialists of any foreign state on the state border of Azerbaijan. The State Border Service, which has the most modern capabilities, does not need the support of foreign forces for reliable guarding and protection of Azerbaijan.”
“At present, the operational situation on the state border with Iran is stable and is fully controlled by the border guards of Azerbaijan. Any provocations on the border directed against the state interests of Azerbaijan will be suppressed,” the statement concluded.
Baku and Tehran have recently traded barbs over the alleged presence of “third-party” forces presumed to be Israel near the border with Iran, which has been categorically denied by Azerbaijan, amid a reported military build-up on the Iranian side.