Afghanistan today rejected “celebratory” reports of a Pakistani paramilitary force claiming that it had killed 50 Afghan soldiers in border clashes last week, saying only two Afghan soldiers had died. Afghanistan’s envoy to Pakistan Omar Zakhilwal rejected yesterday’s claim by the Frontier Corps and said two Afghan soldiers were killed and seven others were injured in the clashes between the two forces. “Woke up to celebratory front page headlines today on all Pak papers saying Pak killed 50 Afg soldiers & injured 100 in Chaman clash (sic),” he tweeted.
Zakhilwal said that even the death of the two Afghan soldiers was too many for “our claim for seeking good neighbourly relations is genuine & if we mean well for each other.” “Chaman clash left casualties, deaths & injuries, on Pakistani side too but we instead of celebrating called it unfortunate & regrettable (sic),” he said.
Inspector General of Frontier Corps Major Gen Nadeem Ahmed yesterday claimed 50 Afghan soldiers were killed and over 100 injured in retaliatory firing by the army after the attack on Pakistani census workers by Afghan forces in Balochistan province last week. Ten Pakistani civilians were killed and more than 40 people, including women and children, were injured in the firing by Afghan forces.
Ahmed, however, had told reporters that he was “not happy” about the incident as “Afghans are Muslims, our brothers.” Following the clashes, Pakistan on Friday closed a busy border crossing in Balochistan which is still shut for traffic. The clashes marked the latest round of escalation of border tensions between the two countries, which often accuse each other of sheltering terrorists who launch deadly cross- border attacks on each other’s soils.
Both the countries deny the accusations.