Pakistan and Afghanistan engaged in talks on Monday to reach an agreement on border management. According to officials, the two countries failed to reach an agreement after several days of clashes at the border last week that resulted in four deaths. Clashes arose after Pakistan started building a barrier at the crossing in order to stop Islamist Militants crossing over into Pakistani territory. The move infuriated Afghanistan which religiously rejects the colonial-era Durand Line border drawn up in 1893. It is, to this day, considered a disputed territory and therefore, construction of checkpoints along this boundary unacceptable to Afghanistan.
On Thursday last week, the two countries agreed on a ceasefire, and it was decided that a delegation led by deputy foreign minister of Afghanistan, Hekmat Khalil Karzai, would visit Pakistan for talks on Monday. Foreign Secretary of Pakistan, Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry, on Monday informed the Afghan delegation that Pakistan planned on building four gates at different points on the border crossing. A Pakistani foreign office official stated,
There was no final agreement but we have informed them [Afghanistan] of our position. These are gates are important for the safety and security of both Pakistan and Afghanistan.
A statement from Afghanistan was also released regarding the tensions at the border. The statement said that the talks were held in a friendly atmosphere. Pakistan considers construction of these checkpoints at the border an important step to ensuring security of the country. As such, Pakistan hosts 2.5 million Afghan refugees. Many in the country consider the massive amount of refugees unsafe and destabilizing.
Relationship between Afghanistan and Pakistan have been going south for the past few months. Kabul accuses Pakistan of harboring militants seeking to topple Afghan government. Pakistan denies supporting any militants and maintains that it is constructing the border gate to prevent anti-Pakistan militants crossing over from Afghanistan.You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ for more updates. Otherwise fill in the subscription box above, or subscribe to our RSS Feed.