U.N. Criticizes Pakistans Plan To Mine And Fence Sections Of Border With Afghanistanadmin
Pakistan’s plan to mine parts of its border with Afghanistan has come under criticism from United Nation officials who said the move was likely to add to civilian casualties in the region, already proliferated with artillery. Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary on Tuesday had announced plans to mine and fence sections of its border with Afghanistan in an attempt to stem infiltration of militants to and from Pakistan. Richard Bennett, United Nation Chief Human Rights Officer in Afghanistan, said, “From a human rights perspective, we would be concerned about any mining. Human rights advocates are solidly opposed globally to the use of landmines. The UN is opposed to the use of mines.”
Afghanistan is considered one of the worst landmine affected countries in the world, with thousands of civilians killed or maimed in the past several years of conflict. The border areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan have tribal population closely related on either both sides of the border. Pakistan’s relations with Afghanistan have been on a downslide with the Afghan President Hamid Karzai accusing Pakistan of harboring and supporting Taleban fighters, denied consistently by Pakistan.
Meanwhile, NATO said that the proposal should be discussed by Afghan, Pakistani and NATO commanders, while a representative of the International Security Assistance Force also echoing similar approach. Pakistan feels there is no need for any discussion with Afghanistan on the issue as the plan involved mining and fencing areas on its side of the border.