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KABUL: An artillery fire came after clashes between Pakistani and Afghan security forces at the closed Chaman-Spin Boldak border crossing on Friday, where crowds on both sides were waiting to cross for on Eid-ul-Azha.

Hospital officials in Pakistan told Reuters three bodies and 20 people suffering bullet wounds had been brought after the clashes between protesters and security forces. They exchanged fire when crowds waiting to cross into Afghanistan became unruly and attacked Pakistani installations, a Pakistani official said. The crossing, mostly closed to pedestrians during the COVID-19 pandemic, was briefly opened on Wednesday and was to open again Thursday to allow nationals of both countries to cross for Eid, which falls on Friday in Afghanistan and Saturday in Pakistan.

When it did not open, a large crowd gathered to protest, and a quarantine centre and a Pakistani government facility for processing movement at the crossing were burned down, a Pakistani official at the border told Reuters. An official of the Chaman administration, Zakaullah Durrani, told Reuters that the situation on the border remained tense.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020