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Pakistan, Afghanistan start joint survey after border clash

08 Mai 2017

On Saturday, Pakistani and Afghan authorities mooted over the control of the areas, Killi Luqman and Killi Jahangir, affected during firing and shelling by the Afghan forces on Friday, which ended in a stalemate.

The clashes marked the latest round of escalation of border tensions between the two countries, which often accuse each other of sheltering terrorists who launch deadly cross- border attacks on each other's soils.

A number of high-ranking Pakistani officials have visited Kabul in the past few weeks to allay the Afghan government's concerns, but the visits have not yielded positive results.

Pakistan has since closed the busy Chaman border crossing with landlocked Afghanistan. It said that in the first two months of 2017, 807 personnel of Afghan security forces had been killed and 1,328 injured.

"So far, we have received nine bodies".

At least 42 people were reported wounded on the Pakistani side, including women and children, and Mohammad said some of the wounded were in critical condition.

Ahmed, however, described the events as unfortunate.

Najib Danish, deputy spokesman for the Afghan Interior Ministry, said that account was "completely baseless". Reports have stated the number of troops required could be around 3,000-5,000 comprising mostly training staff so as to raise the capabilities of the Afghan forces.

Rawat's call to strengthen relations with Afghanistan is all the more provocative as Islamabad has repeatedly accused Indian and Afghan intelligence of conspiring together against Pakistan.

Maj. Gen. Anjum said four or five checkposts were also destroyed when Pakistani border guards retaliated to the cross-border attack. Among the Afghan wounded were 23 civilians.

Pakistan Army was on high alert to respond to any aggression shown by Afghan forces.

Experts say the main reason behind an increasing hostility between the two countries is Kabul's growing ties with Pakistan's archrival India.

The border is considered invalid by many Afghans and clashes along it are not uncommon. He did not elaborate on what those obstacles entailed.

Sartaj Aziz, the foreign affairs adviser to Pakistani prime minister, told reporters neither side wants "any violence between our two countries or any loss of life".

"Anyone who tries to make Pakistan's territory disputed will face similar consequences", Lt Gen Riaz told reporters during a visit to Chaman, where the Friday clashes took place.

Afghanistan has also become an increasingly significant battleground in the strategic rivalry between India and Pakistan.

Pakistan, Afghanistan start joint survey after border clash