KABUL: Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Saturday called on the Afghan Taliban to turn their weapons against those who plot against Afghanistan.
“Instead of destroying their own country, they should turn their weapons against places where plots are made against Afghan prosperity,” Karzai said in a press conference in Kabul, saying this was “a reminder for the Taliban”.
“They should stand with this young man who was martyred and defend their soil,” he said, referring to a border policeman who was killed in the Wednesday night clash on eastern Afghanistan’s border with Pakistan. Two Pakistani soldiers were wounded in the clash.
The incident on the Afghan-Pakistani frontier occurred over a border gate and checkpoint, recently installed by Pakistan near the Durand Line, a border drawn by the British in the 19th century.
Afghan officials said Afghan forces destroyed the border installations.
Karzai said Afghanistan “has never accepted” and “will never recognize” the Durand Line. He said those behind such attacks seek to force Afghanistan to recognize the Durand Line.
Afghan President said those who attack Afghanistan “from the other side of the Durand Line” are against Afghanistan’s progress and prosperity, and that they want to see Afghanistan “weak” and “disintegrated.”
Both sides blamed each other for sparking the incident on the border in Afghanistan’s eastern Nangarhar Province. Pakistani officials said three of their soldiers were injured in the fighting, which ended early on May 2.
Kabul had repeatedly demanded that Islamabad remove the installations, saying they were on Afghan territory.
Pakistan views the Durand Line as an international border, which Afghanistan has consistently refused to recognize.