TORKHAM: The Torkham border crossing remained closed for a second consecutive day due to tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan over the construction of a bunker on the Afghan side, officials said on Thursday.
An official in Torkham, speaking on condition of anonymity, disclosed that all movement had been suspended for the second day, but no gunfire had occurred from either side. Talks between Islamabad and Kabul were expected to take place on Thursday to peacefully resolve the bunker construction issue.
Meanwhile, numerous loaded and empty container trucks were stranded on both sides of the border. A video circulating on social media showed several trucks on the Afghan side of the Torkham border had been damaged by gunfire.
Transporters and traders were advised to halt consignments destined for Afghanistan via the Torkham border due to the precarious situation. Also, many passengers were also stranded at the border.
Among those affected were two families, one with a 10-year-old boy who had passed away in Pakistan. They were waiting for the Torkham border to reopen so they could transport the bodies for burial in Afghanistan.
Afghan Gul, a relative of the deceased boy, pleaded for permission to bury the body as soon as possible and highlighted the two-day wait endured by their grieving families.
An official in Landikotal mentioned that a substantial number of loaded export goods trucks had been turned back from the Torkham border and parked near Landikotal for safety reasons. The Afghan government had also evacuated the border areas and advised truck owners to leave Torkham border. No talks had occurred between border authorities to initiate a peaceful resolution of the border closure issue.
The situation remained tense on the second day as people were concerned about the possibility of resumption of the firing at any moment.