Islamabad, March 9: Over 51,000 Afghans and 4,900 Pakistanis returned to their respective countries after the Pakistan government reopened the border crossings on Tuesday. The crossings were initially closed after a string of militant attacks in Pakistan last month killed over 125 people.
Pakistan has temporarily reopened its two main border crossings with Afghanistan to allow visitors with valid visas on both sides to return home, the foreign office announced. According to reports, 11,500 Afghans crossed the border on Wednesday and 12,539 on Tuesday. About 700 Pakistanis returned home in two days. While 2,631 Pakistanis returned home via the Chaman border crossing in two days.
“We have closed the border again for an indefinite period,” a senior security official said, cited by Dawn newspaper, adding that he was not aware when it would reopen.
Significantly Pakistan has voiced concerns over terrorist sanctuaries in Afghanistan, from where majority of last month's attacks were believed to be coordinated.
"Terrorists must be denied freedom of movement along the border," Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa was quoted as saying in a statement. He lauded the immediate response of the personnel and expressed grief over the loss of precious lives.