Vehicle traffic between Quetta and Chaman was interrupted on Monday due to a blockade of the Quetta-Chaman highway at Khojak Pass by members of the All Parties Traders Alliance and border workers protesting the closure of the border crossing for the last 20 days.
After three days of rallies in Chaman, they finally stopped the highway by creating barricades and depositing massive boulders at the top of the Khojak Pass, which connects Pakistan and Afghanistan.
“We will continue to blockade the highway until the Chaman border crossing is reopened,” Sadiq Achakzai, president of the All Parties Traders Alliance.
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“Every day, the authorities involved assure us that they will reopen the border today or tomorrow,” he explained.
Mr Achakzai stated that thousands of people had been rendered jobless and were struggling to feed their families due to the border shutdown.
He stated that thousands of Pakistanis and Afghans were trapped on both sides of the border, awaiting the border’s reopening.
The Chaman border crossing, the second-largest commercial crossing point between the two countries after Torkham in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, connects to Spin Boldak in the Afghan province of Kandahar. Thousands of labourers and traders from both countries use the crossing daily.
The Taliban leadership blocked the border without notifying Pakistani border authorities 20 days ago. They request that Afghans be allowed to enter Pakistan with only their Afghan ID cards rather than presenting other travel credentials. Protesting traders close the Quetta-Chaman highway.
At least four talks between Pakistani and Afghan border officials to discuss the issue failed. Additionally, Kandahar Governor Yousaf Wafa.
He attended one of Spin Boldak, but he stated that Pakistan should speak with Kabul about reopening the border, as he lacked the jurisdiction to do so.
However, sources reported that both sides’ gates were unlocked on Sunday night, allowing those who had been stranded on both sides of the border for more than two weeks to cross into their respective countries.
“Patients and other individuals crossed the border with the authorization of border officials,” a border official stated. Protesting traders close the Quetta-Chaman highway.
Hundreds of trucks and other commercial vehicles have become stranded on both sides of the border.
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