The Afghan government in a letter to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has raised the issue of “consistent violations of Afghanistan’s territory” by Pakistani forces and has called on the UN to initiate “necessary measures to address the matter at hand in an effective manner”.
This is Afghanistan’s second letter to the United Nations in a week. The first time was about a planned meeting between Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan and Taliban’s representatives in Islamabad. In the letter, the Afghan government said the meeting “undermines” the Afghan peace process and “violates Afghanistan’s national sovereignty”. Taliban called off the meet saying they are unable to travel due to UN and US travel restrictions on them.
“The nature of these violations mainly includes persistent shelling of Afghan territory, particularly in districts and villages of Kunar and Nangarhar provinces; violation of Afghan air space by Pakistani military aircrafts, as well as construction of military posts, barbwire fence and barriers inside Afghanistan’s territory, most recently in Spin Boldak district of Kandahar,” Nazifullah Salarzai, Deputy Permanent Representative of Afghanistan to United Nation, said in a letter to the UNSC on February 22.
Afghanistan said the cross-Durand Line violations date back to 2012 but have increased in frequency since 2017.
According to the letter, during 2012 to 2017 period, 28,849 artillery shells were fired into Afghanistan by Pakistan resulting in the death of at least 82 people and injuring 187 others.
Since 1st January 2018, the number of violations by Pakistan in Afghanistan stands at 161 which include firing 6,025 artillery shells into Afghan territory.
The Afghan government also exposed the policy of the new Pakistan government led by Imran Khan to UNSC.
“What we have seen is nothing but actions that translate to the continued violation of the action plan,” Salarzai said in the letter, recalling the September 2018 visit of Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmoud Qureshi to Kabul during which Islamabad reiterated its commitment to implement the Afghanistan Pakistan action plan.
Afghanistan Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Solidarity (APAPPS) was agreed by former Pakistan government under former Prime Minister of Pakistan, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, and the Afghan government for peace between the two countries.
It also included a commitment to avoid territorial and aerial violations.