Additional Pakistani troops on Pak-Afghan border
Pakistan deploys additional troops on Pak-Afghan border: Envoy
(APP)- Pakistan's envoy to the UK, Dr. Maleeha Lodhi said that Pakistan has deployed an additional 4,000 troops on the Pakistan-Afghan border to bolster security in the run up to the parliamentary elections in Afghanistan on September 18.Dr. Lodhi said this in briefings to British officials and the media. She said this has brought the total number of Pakistani military forces on the border close to 80,000.She said the additional force deployment has been accompanied by the establishment of scores of new check posts, both static and mobile, along the border to strengthen interdiction capabilities. These additional posts have been set up both along theborder in the NWFP and Balochistan.
There is also increased patrolling along the long frontier border, she added. Among the measures Pakistan has taken to facilitate the peaceful conduct of elections in neighbouring Afghanistan, Dr. Maleeha Lodhi said these included improved information and intelligence sharing. Pakistan's envoy emphasised that the total number of Pakistani troops deployed on the border were twice as many as the combined strength of the national and international presence within Afghanistan. NATO has deployed 2,000 extra troops while 700 more US troops will join the coalition forces for the parliamentary elections.
Dr. Lodhi said that this additional deployment and extra security measures taken by Pakistan underscored the country's commitment to helping Afghanistan conduct peaceful polls. She asserted that this demonstrated Pakistan's vital stake in Afghanistan's stability and security. Pakistan's High Commissioner said that the steps taken by the country will add an additional tier to the security system devised for the Afghan elections. The aim is to prevent any movement to and from the borders by Pakistan Army and Frontier Constabulary forces.