Birjand is the east Iranian provincial capital of South Khorasan and the centre of the county Birjand resp. Quhestan, known for its saffron, barberry, rug and handmade carpet exports. Being close to the Afghanistan border, Birjand is located on the "Silk Road" of opium smuggled from Afghanistan on the way to Europe (also dubbed the "opium crescent"). The city has a dry climate with significant difference between day and night temperatures. It is a fast-growing city, thus becoming one of the major centres in the East of Iran.
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