published : 2023-09-12

Taliban and Pakistan Clash Over Border Closure, Escalating Tensions

Blame game intensifies between Taliban-controlled Afghanistan and Pakistan

Taliban fighter keeps a watchful eye on the Afghan-Pakistan border at Torkham. (Taken with a Canon EOS 5D Mark IV)

The Taliban has rejected Pakistani government accusations that they are to blame for the closure of a key border crossing.

Pakistan shut down the vital commercial artery of Torkham last week after a clash between border guards.

The Pakistani Foreign Ministry spokesperson accused the Taliban of unlawful structures and unprovoked firing, also alleging that Afghanistan allows its soil to be used for terror attacks on Pakistan.

Pakistani border guards patrol the Torkham border crossing, as tensions rise between Pakistan and the Taliban. (Taken with a Nikon D850)

These accusations have infuriated the Taliban, with some officials criticizing the Pakistani government's inability to guarantee security.

The Taliban's Interior Ministry spokesperson defended their actions, stating that they only acted in self-defense and that Pakistan's security problems should be addressed internally.

The focus should be on good neighborliness and economic cooperation, according to the Taliban.

Afghan locals gather at the border, hoping for the reopening of Torkham and easing of tensions. (Taken with a Sony Alpha A7 III)

Efforts to resolve the border closure and ease tensions are underway through meetings between leaders from both sides.

Torkham has witnessed clashes in the past, with accusations of building new border posts by both Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Afghanistan has never recognized the border that runs through the Pashtun heartland, while Pakistan claims to have fenced 97% of it to prevent attacks and smuggling.