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Taliban slams Pakistan for closing border crossing with Afghanistan

Following skirmishes between security forces this week, the Afghan Taliban slammed the closure of its main border crossing with Pakistan and claimed that businesses will suffer significant losses as a result.

According to local authorities, the major Torkham border crossing was shut down on Wednesday when Pakistani and Afghan Taliban forces began exchanging fire.

“The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan deems the closure of Torkham gate and opening of fire on Afghan security forces by the Pakistani side contrary to good neighbourliness,” Taliban administration’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement late on Saturday.

According to the statement, the incident began when Pakistani security forces opened fire on Afghan Taliban forces repairing a dilapidated guard outpost close to the border. Requests for comment from Pakistan’s foreign office were not immediately fulfilled.

Traders on both sides of the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan have complained that trade is being hampered by the stoppage of hundreds of trucks carrying cargo.

“The closure of Torkham gate can adversely affect bilateral and regional trade, and cause trade and financial losses to common mercantile class on both sides,” the statement by the Afghan Taliban said.

The Afghan Taliban went on to add that a lot of travelers were also stuck on both sides of the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The 2,600 km (1,615 mile) boundary has been the source of disputes between the neighbours for many years.-