The Pakistan Army provided “refuge and safe passage” to 46 Afghan National Army (ANA) and Border Police soldiers.

An Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement said a local ANA commander across Erandu, Chitral, had requested help for 46 soldiers, including five officers, because “due to the changing security situation in Afghanistan, they could not handle (their) check post along the Pak-Afghan border.”

Pak-Afghan Border
The Pakistani military has contacted Afghan officials for information and necessary action, ISPR – PC: AFP

The statement added that the Pakistani military has contacted Afghan authorities for relevant information and necessary action.

“Afghan troops reached the Erandu sector of Chitral late at night. After contacting the Afghan authorities and the necessary military procedures, 46 soldiers, including five officers, have been given safe haven in Pakistan,” it said.

The ISPR statement said that “military personnel have been provided with food, shelter and necessary medical assistance in accordance with established military principles.”

“Soldiers and officers will be returned to the Afghan government in a dignified manner after due process,” it said.

Citing a similar incident, the ISPR statement said, “On July 1, 35 Afghan soldiers who had sought refuge were also given safe passage in Pakistan and handed over to the Afghan government after due process.”

Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed had earlier told media that Pakistan had shifted the Frontier Constabulary, Levies Force and others along the Pak-Afghan border from the frontline fronts as the army began work on those fronts.

The federal minister had said that “now that the paramilitary forces have been replaced, regular army troops are managing the border.”

He said the decision was taken in view of the volatile situation across the border.

He added that “given the current volatile situation (in Afghanistan), it is imperative that regular troops be deployed along the border.”

Earlier in July, more than 1,000 Afghan security personnel fled across the border into Tajikistan after the Taliban advanced into northern Afghanistan.

The Taliban have seized six key districts in the northern province of Badakhshan, bordering both Tajikistan and China, after 1,037 Afghan soldiers fled the border with Tajik permission.

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