Friday, September 27, 2019 7:50 am
Pakistan on Friday closed all border crossings with Afghanistan in a bid to improve security ahead of presidential elections in the war-battered country after the insurgent Taliban threatened to disrupt the polls.
The crossings are to remain closed to the cross-border movement of people and trade lorries on Friday and during polling in Afghanistan on Saturday, the Pakistani foreign ministry said in a statement.
Elections for a new Afghan president are set for Saturday amid fears of violence after Taliban leaders ordered their cadres to disrupt the process.
There have been allegations that the Afghan Taliban launch deadly attacks in Afghanistan using their hideouts across the border in connivance with the Pakistani spy agencies. Islamabad denies this.
Apart from the complete border closure for two days, Pakistan also deployed extra security at the crossings to make sure militants do not cross into Afghanistan.
The elections are being held weeks after a peace process between the U.S. and the Taliban collapsed, prompting fears of more violence in the country, which has been in turmoil since 2001.