QUETTA: As Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan at Chaman remains closed on the second consecutive day on Saturday, authorities issued shoot-at-sight orders for those found trying to cross over.

The Friendship Gate was closed on Friday as part of tightening security in the wake of the suicide attack on the shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in Sehwan town of Sindh in which nearly 90 people lost their lives and over 340 others suffered injuries.

As a result, traffic and transit trade between Pakistan and Afghanistan also remained suspended.

“Shooting order has been issued to the security forces for those...found trying to enter...Pakistan illegally from any area of the border,” security officials said. “The Friendship Gate at Pak-Afghan border [has been] sealed for [an] indefinite period,” a Frontier Corps spokesman said.

“There will be no traffic between Pakistan and Afghanistan for an indefinite period,” border officials said.

Shops in the Vash Mandi area across the border in Afghanistan were closed and traders in Chaman also did not open their businesses in protest against the terrorist attacks in Pakistan.

Hundreds of trucks and long vehicles carrying transit trade goods and Nato supplies have been stranded on both sides of the border.

Official sources said that after the recent bomb blasts in Quetta, Lahore, Peshawar and Sehwan more FC troops have been deployed along the border with Afghanistan.

Published in Dawn, February 19th, 2017

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