Uzbekistan, Afghanistan sign rail deal with eyes on Iran

Kabul

Afghanistan and Uzbekistan have signed an agreement to extend a railway between the two countries which could give Uzbekistan a strategic access to the Persian Gulf through Iran.
The agreement over the project – which would be within the framework of the Trans-Afghan Transport Corridor that has been in the pipeline for over 12 years – was signed in Uzbekistan’s capital Tashkent on Thursday by Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev and his Afghan counterpart Mohammad Ashraf Ghani.
The plan is to construct a new railway with a total length of above 1,000 kilometers from Mazar-e-Sharif in Afghanistan’s northern province of Balkh and to the western city of Herat which is close to the border with Iran.
“The line would extend from Neyababad in Mazar-e-Sharif to Herat on one side and to Kunduz on the other.—Agencies

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