JALALABAD: Hundreds of Afghans took to the streets on Monday chanting anti-Pakistan slogans to protest against cross-border attacks that they claim have killed dozens of people.
In recent weeks tensions have sharply risen on the border that runs alongside the restive Afghan provinces of Kunar and Nangarhar, which villagers say have been bombarded with hundreds of rocket attacks.
Pakistan says its security forces may have fired a few accidental rounds into Afghanistan while pursuing militants. It also says that insurgents from Afghanistan have crossed the border to attack security checkpoints.
About 500 people rallied in eastern Jalalabad city, capital of Nangarhar province, carrying banners and chanting slogans against Pakistan.
Police installed barricades along the road leading to the Pakistani consulate, where the protesters appeared to be heading.
The escalating border dispute has badly hit relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan at a key juncture in efforts to find a political solution to a decade of conflict in Afghanistan.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai has told Pakistan's army chief Ashfaq Kayani the attacks must stop, while the Pakistanis summoned the Afghan ambassador and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has complained back to Karzai.
On Thursday, military officials from Pakistan and Afghanistan met in Peshawar and agreed to hold more high-level talks and meetings between commanders on the border to defuse the row.
Western and Afghan officials see assistance from Pakistan as crucial to efforts to open up a communication channel with the Taliban amid early stage contacts over peace talks.