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Resolve Torkham tension through talks, Asfandyar says

By Mansoor Faizy-KABUL: Since clashes between the Afghan border police and Pakistani paramilitary forces resumed Monday at the Torkham crossing, a senior Pakhtun nationalist leader Asfandyar Wali Khan called on the two countries to exercise extreme cautions to put an end to the skirmishes through dialogues.

Head of the Awami National Party voiced concern over clashes erupted between border forces of the two states.

He warned that skirmishes could give birth to the several problems and most of it would affect refugees and travelers between the two countries.

Millions of Afghan refugees live in Peshawar. Recently around 25 Afghan migrants were arrested during a search operation. Earlier, police in Peshawar had detained 57 Afghan nationals.

“Relations between the neighbors had long been tense and such incident could further strain them,” the statement quoted Asfandyar Wali Khan as saying.

He called on both sides authorities to cool of Torkham skirmishes through talks.

“Civilians would be the most victims of this conflict if the situation remains intact,” he said, asking security officials to avert loss of lives and properties.

One Afghan border police was killed and five others wounded during exchange of fire on Sunday night.

Nangarhar provincial spokesman Attaullah Khogyani told Afghanistan Times that the clash began after Pakistani troops attempted to build a gate inside the Afghan soil.

However, Pakistani forces also received casualties, where one senior Pakistani officer was killed and ten others were wounded during skirmishes.

After escalation of tension in Torkham, the Ministry of Defense assured the people that the Afghan National Security and Defense Forces are ready to defend their soil and said that Afghan Border Police bravely repel any border attacks.

The ministry spokesman, Dawlat Waziri said that Afghan army will not let any country to establish border facilities without consultant with the government. “Security forces will leave no stone unturned to prevent construction of border facilities into Afghan soil”.


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