KABUL: The U.S. has begun constructing military bases on the other side of the Durand Line, sources said but Washington is yet to officially confirm it.
Sarkhat, a national newspaper quoted some anonymous sources as saying that Americans and Pakistanis on the other side of the Durand Line “from Shilwazan to Mangal Jaz” areas are working on military bases.
However, the Pakistani foreign minister earlier said that Islamabad would not allow the U.S. to construct military bases in Pakistan.
Tahir Khan, a famous Pakistani journalist quoted by Pajhwok News Agency, said that he heard similar rumors but doubted its accuracy. He believed that the U.S. didn’t need to construct bases across the Durand Line.
The residents of the southeastern Paktia province also confirmed that the American military had been constructing bases across Durand Line. A tribal elder, Abdullah Zazai said that the construction is underway in “Shilwazan, Tari Mangal, and Jazo Maidan” areas.
“As long as I know and have contacts with Afghans across the line, a massive construction began there and the American choppers lands and take off there,” Zazai said.
Another resident, Jamal Naseem said that there were rumors initially over establishment of a hospital. “The people said there will a big hospital that the Afghans will also be allowed to refer; but we see the arrival and departure of B-52 and understand that there will be a base,” he added.
A tribal elder on the other side of the line, who wished to go unnamed, said that military personnel, vehicles and aircrafts have been conducting arrival and departure in the area.
According to him, the Pakistani military staged outposts around the areas and didn’t allow the residents to enter the area.
The district governor of Zazai Aryoub, Kiftan Ikhlas also confirm that the Americans are constructing a big military base across the line. He said that war aircrafts and transport aircrafts appears every day in the area.
This comes as the U.S. Commander of Central Command Kenneth McKenzie told the U.S. Senate that a portion of the U.S. troop will maintain stationed in the vicinity of Afghanistan after withdrawal that is scheduled by September 11.
The U.S. officials have repeatedly so far stressed that Washington would be able to eliminate threats from the horizons.