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‘Death to Pakistan’; Nangarhar residents protest Pak artillery shelling

By Mansoor Faizy-KABUL: Thousands of residents in eastern Nangarhar province staged a rally on Sunday to protest Pakistan artillery shelling, shouting anti-Pakistan slogans.

Around 4,000 residents of the Lalpura district took to the streets, chanting “death to Pakistan!”, “we hate you Pakistan!” and torched the neighboring country’s flag.

The protestors said that artillery shelling by Pakistan still continues, and more than 2,000 families were displaced in the district. “We left our homes to save our lives,” the protestors added.

Shah Gul, a protestor, said, “We hate Pakistan, and will continue demonstrations against Pakistan shelling until to put an end to it.”

“More than 3,000 rockets were fired by Pakistan in different areas of the district that caused huge panic among the residents,” said another protestor.

Another protester, Haji Gul Ahmad, said: “It has been four days that Pakistani army is firing rockets in the district”. He called on the government to take a bold step in this regard.

Confirming the news, the provincial council chief, Ali Ahmad Hazart, said: “Unfortunately Pakistani shelling has been continuing for four days now, but no reaction has been taken by the government yet.”

“We want the government to take a significant step to prevent the shelling.”

This comes as two civilians were killed in artillery shelling in eastern Kunar province. According to the local security officials, the incident took place late on Thursday night after dozens of artillery shelling were fired on Sarkano district.

Provincial police spokesman, Faridullah Dehqan said that the shelling continued for several hours. He added that one of the rockets landed on a residential house in Sarkano district, leaving two members of a family dead.

To lodge complaint against the shelling, Pakistan ambassador to Kabul summoned over artillery shelling in eastern provinces of Afghanistan and safe havens of the terrorist in Pakistan from where they launch attacks in Afghanistan.

Deputy Foreign Minister, Hekmat Khalil Karzai told Syed Abrar Hussain, Pakistani ambassador to Kabul, that artillery shelling in Lalpur district of Nangarhar and other eastern provinces had forced thousands of Afghans to flee their homes in a harsh winter season.

The Pakistani ambassador promised to share the issue with the relevant authorities in Pakistan.

The Afghan security forces are ready to defend the country, if diplomatic channels failed, said Chief of the Army Staff, Qadam Shah Shaheem.

Moreover, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Dr. Abdullah Abdullah informed of efforts taken by the government to prevent Pakistani attack on eastern provinces.

Thanking the resident of Kunar province for lending support behind their own security forces, Abdullah said, the government had initiated efforts to stop the rocket attacks.

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