Renovation, not construction: Pakistan dismisses Afghan concerns on border checkposts

Published: April 3, 2013
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Pakistan says it is renovating its old chekpost Gursal, not building a new one. PHOTO: EXPRESS/FILE

Pakistan says it is renovating its old chekpost Gursal, not building a new one. PHOTO: EXPRESS/FILE

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan dismissed Afghan allegations that it was constructing a new checkpost along the border, claiming that the activity in question was renovation of an old checkpost, a statement from the foreign ministry read on Tuesday.

Afghanistan had on Monday expressed grave concern about what it claimed the ‘Pakistani military’s unilateral construction and physical reinforcement activities’ along the border in the eastern Ningarhar province.

It had also lodged a formal protest, as diplomatic tensions between the two uneasy neighbours continue to grow.

However, responding to the Afghan claims, the foreign office spokesperson said that Pakistan has an old post called Gursal well inside Pakistani territory bordering Ningarhar province of Afghanistan, which is under routine renovation.

“Under the recently signed Tripartite Border SOP, both sides are supposed to inform any new construction closer to border areas,” he said before adding that despite it being routine renovation work, Pakistan had shared this information with the Afghan side and with the Afghan delegation that visited Mohmand Agency on January 24, 2013.

“The renovation of the post is primarily meant to interdict terrorists and criminals as well as better management of the border area between Afghanistan and Pakistan.”

About the Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister Jawed Ludin’s recent concerns about construction and physical reinforcement along the Afghan border, he said that they are “not in keeping with the spirit of the understanding on good border management and the recently signed Tripartite Border SOP.”

“Better management of the border through strengthening border posts located in each other’s territory are in the interest of the two countries to have an effective check over terrorists and criminals.”

Cross border attacks

Responding to a query about the Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister’s concerns over rocket and artillery attacks in different areas of Kunar Province, the spokesperson said that these complaints have not been found to be correct as “no rocket or artillery shells have been fired by Pakistan Army in recent days.”

The spokesperson added that Pakistan remains committed to extending all possible support and facilitation for peace, reconciliation and stability in Afghanistan.

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Reader Comments (7)

  • Max
    Apr 3, 2013 - 12:41AM

    Message to Karzai: Grow up.

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  • Sterry
    Apr 3, 2013 - 1:15AM

    Why can’t the Pakistan government put pressure on ISAF and NATO to reign in terrorist attacks carried out against Pakistani civilians from Afghanistan? The US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has confirmed that India is using Afghanistan as a base to cause trouble in Pakistan so why can’t Pakistan work to close the border to non monitored movement. Not just fencing, mines and construction but electronic measures to control illegal movement of Afghanis into Pakistan must begin. Pakistan has suffered enough because of Afghanistan.
    Yes the border is hilly and difficult but the West needs to help pay for it in recognition for the key role Pakistan played in defeating the Soviet Union and ending the Cold War.

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  • Waseem
    Apr 3, 2013 - 2:09AM

    This is very wrong approach being apologetic with Afghanistan on border check posts. Pakistan must guard its borders, make them more vigilant and keep it tight for all illegal activities including human and non-human smuggling. This is must, otherwise, continue facing all the crap coming from our western borders.

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  • Sandip
    Apr 3, 2013 - 3:02AM

    Pakistan dismisses Indian concerns regarding terrorism emanating from Pakistan. It dismisses Afghan concerns regarding problems with Pakistan. It dismisses its own people’s concerns regarding terrorism and extremism that is devouring the Pakistani society. Very soon, it will end up dismissing itself as a country if the present continues.

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  • ali
    Apr 3, 2013 - 5:32AM

    @sandip
    you wish

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  • Historian 1
    Apr 3, 2013 - 9:17AM

    @ Sandip: take a chill pill

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  • Lol?
    Apr 3, 2013 - 3:36PM

    @Sandip, you realise the fence construction was meant to limit the terrorism you’re squeaking on about, and this clarification means not even that is happening so Afghanistan’s complaints are baseless.

    Did you even read the article?

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