Torkham crossing was closed after forces from either side exchanged hearth, stranding 1000’s of travellers and lots of of vans.
Islamabad, Pakistan – A key border crossing between Pakistan and Afghanistan has been reopened for pedestrian and vehicular site visitors after remaining closed for 9 days, following an exchange of fire between the safety forces of the 2 nations.
Muhammad Anas, an official in Khyber district of Pakistan’s northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, the place the Torkham border crossing is situated, confirmed the event to Al Jazeera on Friday.
“We opened the border gates after 7.30am at this time [Friday]. Immigration and customized officers arrived to renew their duties as regular, and each pedestrian and vehicular site visitors was allowed to go via,” he mentioned.
Afghan officers in Nangarhar province on the opposite facet of the border additionally confirmed the opening of the principle crossing between the 2 nations via which lots of of individuals and automobiles cross daily.
The crossing was closed on September 6 after a lethal change of fireplace between Pakistani and Afghan border forces, killing at the least two Afghan troopers and wounding a number of others.
Pakistan accused Afghanistan of “setting up illegal constructions” close to the crossing and mentioned unprovoked and indiscriminate firing by the Afghan forces led to its closure.
The ruling Taliban authorities in Afghanistan rejected the allegations and mentioned it was solely repairing an outdated safety put up when Pakistani safety forces opened hearth on them.
The Taliban blamed Islamabad for inflicting hindrances and delays in opening the transit level.
Qari Nazim Gul of the All-Pakistan Customs Brokers Affiliation, instructed Al Jazeera the closure triggered merchants losses value tens of millions of rupees.
“We had lots of of vans lined up on the border. This repeated closure of Torkham gate causes struggling for folks like us who’re making an attempt to earn a dwelling or those that are simply in search of to satisfy their households. This wants to finish,” he mentioned over the phone.
Border officers say safety has been enhanced on the border crossing after the firing incident.
Ties between Pakistan and Afghanistan stay frosty. Pakistan has repeatedly accused Afghan officers of harbouring fighters belonging to the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) armed group.
Afghan authorities deny the fees, saying they don’t permit any armed group to make use of their soil for launching assaults on neighbouring nations.
In latest months, the TTP, ideologically aligned with the Afghan Taliban, has drastically elevated its assaults on Pakistani safety forces.
Earlier this month, on the day Torkham was closed, the group killed 4 Pakistani troopers and misplaced 12 of its members in an assault within the Chitral district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.