KHYBER AGENCY – Pakistani security forces again sealed Torkham border on Friday as angers flared up against repeated torture of Pakistani truckers by Afghan forces, official and local sources said.

Sharing the details Wing Commander Col Mushtaq said last day two Pakistani nationals were manhandled by the Afghan troops at Pol-e-Charkhi Post. He said the Afghan forces had repeatedly been misbehaving with the Pakistani nationals which was regrettable.

Giving details of the incident, driver Yar Khan and conductor Lal Gul, residents of Bara, told media persons that after delivering transit assignment in Kabul on Dec 26 they were on way to Pakistan in trailer bearing registration No P-4462 when they were stopped by the Afghan army personnel at Pol-e-Charkhi Checkpost.  “After inquiring about our whereabouts, they dragged us out of the trailer and took inside the checkpost,” they said.  “They treated us harshly, thrashed us and snatched our money. They also asked us to convey the message to all Pakistanis to avoid entering Afghanistan, otherwise, they will set them on fire,” they said. They lamented that Afghan army personnel who were speaking Persian language tore their licences and national identity cards.

The security forces, in retaliation, closed the border at 10 am in the morning on Friday. The border was still closed till filing of the report. Security forces, however, permitted patients to cross either side of the border, sources said.  The negotiations between the Pakistani and Afghan border security forces to settle the issue remained inconclusive, sources said.

“Humiliation of the Pakistanis cannot be tolerated in Afghanistan,” Col Mushtaq, negotiator from the Pak security forces made clear to the Afghan border officials.

On the other hand thousands of people on both sides of the border including women and children were stuck in the mess. They were facing extremely cold weather in an open sky in the rain. The sources said that three children reportedly died of the severe cold on the Afghan side of the border. Ruhul Amin, an Afghan citizen, with loaded baggage on his shoulder said since morning he with his old father was waiting in rain for crossing the border to go to his home in Kabul. Rangheen, another Afghani, presently residing in Kohat, said he with his ill son wanted to reach his home on time in Kohat.

Due to closure of the border all kinds of supplies including Nato logistic and transit goods were completely halted and long queues of parked vehicles on both sides of the Torkham border could be witnessed. It merits mentioning here that on Thursday 29 Afghan citizens were tortured by unidentified armed persons near Michini Post to protest Afghan army’s mistreatment of 29 Pakistani nationals which were later detained by the Pakistani authorities.