Afghan, Pakistani forces trade fire over border fencing
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): Afghan and Pakistani security forces exchanged fire late on Sunday at the Torkham border crossing over the issue of border fencing, an official said.
The Afghan forces initiated the skirmish in reaction to constructing a gate at the Torkham border by the Pakistani paramilitary forces at about 9pm and the cross firing continued as of 10pm, said 301 border zone police official Col. Ayub Hussain Khel.
“The Pakistani paramilitary forces about 9pm wanted to erect the gate at the border crossing against the international laws and without informing us, but we prevented this and clashed with them,” he said.
He did not say about any casualties but vowed to resist the gate’s installation at any cost. “Our forces are in high spirit.”
A border security official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said so far there were no casualties on the Afghan side and the Pakistani forces were also firing from artillery and the skirmish was fierce.
A resident of Torkham township, Imranullah, told Pajhwok Afghan News that both the sides used light and heavy weapons but the clash was away from residential homes.
Nangarhar governor’s spokesman Attaullah Khogyani confirmed the incident, but did go into details.
The Pakistani army said Afghan security forces resorted to unprovoked firing on Pakistani side at Torkham Gate. A Pakistani soldier was injured due to Afghan firing,” a statement issued by the army’s media wing, Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR), said.
The ISPR statement added that, in order to check movement of terrorists through Torkham, Pakistan was constructing a gate on own side of the border as a necessity to check unwanted and illegal movement.
Last month, Pakistan closed the border crossing and reopened it after Pakistan and Afghanistan reached an understanding.
The decision to reopen the border crossing was made at a meeting between Army Chief General Raheel Sharif and Afghan Ambassador Omar Zakhilwal.
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