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Fighting halted on Afghanistan-Pakistan border after clashes
Published on: Tuesday, March 19, 2024
By: AFP
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Fighting halted on Afghanistan-Pakistan border after clashes
Border tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan have steadily escalated in recent years. (AP pic)
KABUL: Fighting has stopped on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border after Pakistani air strikes sparked skirmishes, a Taliban government spokesman said today.

“The situation is calm, the fighting has stopped,” Taliban government spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told AFP.

Pakistan carried out strikes in the border areas in Khost and Paktika provinces in Afghanistan early yesterday.

Islamabad said it had targeted militants it said were responsible for a recent attack on its soil, but Taliban authorities said eight civilians, all women and children, were killed in the bombardment.

Afghanistan’s defence ministry said its border forces retaliated by targeting Pakistani military posts along the border with “heavy weapons”, with cross-border skirmishes reported by both sides.

A senior police officer in the Pakistani border district of Kurram told AFP that Afghan security forces struck the area with mortar shells.

“As a result, three security posts and five houses of civilians suffered partial damage, with nine individuals, including four security personnel wounded,” the officer told AFP, asking not to be named.

“Silence prevails on the border today, and security forces have reinforced their positions.”

Border tensions between the two countries have steadily escalated since the Taliban government seized power in 2021.

Islamabad has accused Kabul’s Taliban government of harbouring militant fighters, allowing them to strike on Pakistani soil with impunity.

Kabul has denied the allegations.

Gun battles also regularly erupt over the construction of checkpoints along the disputed border and trade crossings are closed over immigration disagreements.

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