KARACHI: The Pakistan Army announced on Saturday that work on fencing along the border with Afghanistan was going apace and that the project would complete by next December.
Pakistan and Afghanistan share a long porous border and Islamabad believes it could help contain terrorist activities on this side of the mountainous border — running from tribal areas in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to borderlands in Balochistan — if cross-border movement of militant elements is checked.
In May, Chief of the Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa inaugurated the work for erecting fences along the Afghan border near the Panjpai area of Balochistan.
The director general of the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the army’s public affairs wing, released the details of the progress on the construction of fencing and posts in a tweet on Saturday. “Work on forts & fence continues on Pak-Afg Bdr. Total length 2611 KM. Work on 233 of 843 forts & 802 of 1200 KM pri 1 areas completed. Aiming speedy completion in pri 1 areas, overall completion [is expected] by Dec 2019 IA [InshaAllah]. Shall benefit peaceful people of Pak & Afg while restricting terrorists.”
Prime Minister Imran Khan during his first visit to North and South Waziristan tribal districts on Nov 26 witnessed the ongoing work on border fencing.
Accompanied by the army chief, the premier while addressing a jirga on the occasion said that Pakistan believes in peace beyond borders and would play its role in the Afghan peace process.
Mr Khan witnessed the fencing work in the Ghulam Khan border area. The ISPR at the time had said the prime minister hailed achievements of the security forces and intelligence agencies for their successful operations against terrorists.
“No other country or their armed forces have done what Pakistan and its armed forces have done in war against terrorism,” Mr Khan had said.
Published in Dawn, December 16th, 2018