Pakistan-Afghan Torkham border reopens for pedestrian movement

Pakistan: According to a notification issued by the Pakistan government, the pedestrian entry has been allowed for Afghans after at least five months of suspension. The Pakistan-Afghanistan border crossing at Torkham, which was only allowed to open for trade activities, has now opened its gates, permitting the entry of desperate Afghan men and women into Pakistan, the statement read.

"As many as 240 Afghan nationals entered into Pakistan utilising the online visa facility at the border crossing while at least 108 Pakistanis also availed the opportunity to come back to their country". "The pedestrian entry was opened after instructions from the Ministry of Interior in Islamabad, following an approval by the federal cabinet," said an official at Torkham

In May this year, the Pakistan government decided to close all of its borders with Afghanistan for pedestrian movement in an effort to stop Covid-19 transmission. The restrictions also included Islamabad's decision to now allow the inflow of refugees, who may want to enter into Pakistan amid Taliban takeover and the security situation in Afghanistan.

Officials posted at Torkham revealed that they are expecting about 10,000 to 12,000 Afghan nationals to cross the border and travel between Pakistan and Afghanistan on a daily basis, many of who do daily border-crossing movement for work.

 

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