Afghan forces reopen Nawa Pass route in Kunar
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): Officials said on Monday new border security posts have been established along the Nawa Pass route to prevent possible attacks from militants.
Joint Afghan security forces have launched two days ago a search operation codenamed “Nawa Pass Spring Storm” to reopen the road that connects Kunar with Pakistan’s tribal regions of Mohmand and Khyber and leads to Chitral district.
Officials said the major crossing point had completely been rescued from armed insurgents as a result of the operation.
Insurgents had been in control of the route for several years, making people’s movement problematic.
Col. Noman Hataif, the 201st Selab Military Corps spokesman in the east, told Pajhwok Afghan News that the route had been cleared from the Sarkano district to the Nawa Pass as a result of the offensive.
He said seven militants were killed and 10 others wounded during the operation, with security forces confiscating huge amounts of weapons and ammunitions.
He said new border security posts had been established along the route to keep security for the road, something ISAF forces could not do over the past 14 years.
Meanwhile, the 301st zone border police commander, Brig. Gen. Fazluddin Ayar, told Pajhwok Afghan News the route had been cleared from the presence of militants from the Sarkano district to the Nawa Pass.
He said security forces had seized a number of weapons and roadside bombs during the operation that also resulted in casualties to the insurgents.
Kunar police spokesman Faridullah Dehqan said the provincial government planned to construct four posts for border police as well and deploy local police personnel in areas the road passed through.
“The Nawa Pass is a historic transit road, which will be again made ready for the movement of heavy vehicles in the near future. The road had been closed for traffic over the past four years.”
Nangarhar Chamber of Commerce and Industry head Sher Alam Amlawal told Pajhwok Afghan News that the transit route in the neighbouring province was Torkham border crossing and the Nawa Pass’s reopening would benefit traders in Kunar and Nuristan provinces.
He said traders in Kunar and Nuristan would take their commercial goods from Pakistan to their provinces via the Nawa Pass, which was the cheapest and shortest way for them than Torkham.
Residents of Kunar also said the reopening of the Nawa Pass would resolve many issues they currently faced.
A resident of the Marawara district, Mohammad Ikram, said some of their relatives lived across the border in Pakistan. He said they had been visiting their relatives through Torkham border crossing.
He said the reopening of the Nawa Pass route would reduce the journey and transport fare to Pakistan.
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.