Pakistan-Afghanistan relations on boil? Border clashes reported along Durand Line

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Taliban-Pakistan clash

Caught on cam: Taliban-Pakistan soldiers clash

Photo : Times Now Digital

Islamabad: Pakistan may have helped the Taliban to regain power, but relations between the two countries have deteriorated with border clashes all along the Durand Line this month. So much so that Islamabad and Kabul have formed a joint committee to reduce tensions.

On November 19, there were fresh clashes between the Taliban and the Pakistan border guards near Dandpatan in Paktia, one of the eastern Afghan provinces. The Afghans climbed the border fence and used wire cutters.

Several clashes have taken place in November. There was one in the Chaman-Spin Boldak area of Kandahar and another,in Kharlachi, in Paktia. According to reports a Pakistani security man was killed in one of the clashes and about nine others, including two civilians injured.The Durand Line separates Afghanistan and Pakistan, but the Afghans have not accepted it and believe it should be further to the east.Pakistan’s fencing the border,has been a disquieting experience for Afghanistan. Besides, the local people who live on both sides of the border are Pashtuns and they have been going to and fro for decades, if not more. A fence, suddenly built, after orders from Islamabad, is not very popular with the local people. Unless the two countries decide on easy cross-border travel in these areas, the problems are likely to persist.

Pakistan would have thought that the presence of the Taliban in Kabul would be a strategic victory. But whatever the advantages, the clashes, including the loss of life, has been an embarrassment for Pakistan.

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