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Hundreds rally against Pakistan cross border attacks

11 Jul 2011 - 11:32
11 Jul 2011 - 11:32

JALALABAD (PAN.

Nearly 500 people took to the streets chanting anti-Pakistan slogans to protest the shelling that has killed scores of people and displaced hundreds of others in the eastern provinces of Kunar, Nangarhar and Khost.

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 inside Pakistan.

The rally began in Talashi Street and ended in front of the Bi Bi Hawa School.  Police installed barricades along the road leading to the Pakistani consulate, where the protesters appeared to be heading.

The escalating border dispute has badly hurt relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The protestors chanted slogans against the Pakistani government, army and intelligence agency. They also lashed out at the Afghan government for failing to respond to the attacks effectively.

One of the protestors, Ashiqullah, said the Pakistani military and the ISI were ashamed at the death of Osama bin Laden near a garrison town in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province and wanted to divert the international community’s attention from the incident.

President Hamid Karzai has told Pakistani army chief Ashfaq Kayani that the attacks must stop. The Pakistanis have summoned the Afghan ambassador, and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has complained 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 in an effort to defuse the dispute.

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.

mm/ma

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