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Governor hints at lenient policy for Afghan traders, patients

LANDI KOTAL: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra has said that a comparatively lenient policy will be devised in near future to facilitate the crossborder movement of Afghan traders and patients.

Talking to local journalists at Bazaar-Zakhakhel on Monday where he had gone to offer his condolences over the loss of 27 lives in July 30 flash flood incident, the governor, however, reiterated that a strict border management policy was implemented at Torkham to control incidents of terrorism.

`We can effectively control terrorism only when we have effective control over our borders and the implementation of travel documents restrictions along with the construction of the gate are aimed at ensuring peace on our soil by strict and continuous observation of crossborder movement,` he said.

The governor said that they had a border management policy in place and the gate was constructed at Torkham border. `We will not sit idle now and instead we will provide facilities to Afghans. We are in the process of devising a system for Afghan traders, patients and other needy people to facilitate their cross-border movement,` he added.

Mr Jhagra said that crossborder movement would gain momentum once the new policy was in place as both the neighbouring countries were aspiring to enhance their bilateral trade, political and cultural ties. He said that Pakistan and Afghanistan had traditional and historic ties and internal situation of both the countries had corresponding ef fects on each other.

To a query about the harsh attitude of Frontier Corps with local residents residing near Torkham border, the governor said that strict measures were imperative for effective control over law and order. `Things will improve with the passing of time,` he added. The governor expressed his profound grief over the loss of lives of 18 children, seven women and two men in the July 30 incident and shared his sympathies with the bereaved families.

-Ibrahim Shinwari