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Pakistan's role in security and economy in Afghanistan

Feature: Pakistan’s Key Role in Economic and Security Spheres in Afghanistan

With its neighbor Pakistan, Afghanistan has the longest border and has deep linguistic, ethnic, religious and cultural commonalities. Moreover, nearly two million Afghan refugees have been living in Pakistan for more than three decades now, indicating the depth of friendship between the two neighboring countries.
At the same time, the importance of economic and security relations with Pakistan for a country like Afghanistan is not hidden from anyone, but what is important is that these relations take place within the framework of a strong strategy that takes into account the national interests of both countries and peaceful coexistence.
During their tenures in office, President Karzai and Ashraf Ghani have always spoken of Pakistan’s involvement in Afghanistan, and have become accustomed to complaining, and linking almost all problems and shortcomings and security weaknesses to Pakistan. Their actions, however, can be best described as passing the buck.
However, the reality is that the Afghan government has not been honest with its people on many issues and does not blame itself for the successive incidents, rather blames its security weaknesses on others. However, to be honest, Afghanistan has also contributed to the escalation of tensions and increased insecurity in Pakistan. For all the wrong reasons, there are groups in Afghanistan that still do not recognize Pakistan’s existence and independence. Groups such as the Durand Jirga and the like are still seeking a crisis inside Pakistan.
It’s not just that. Everyone condemns Pakistan’s alleged rocket launches; but they don’t think why Pakistan should buy thousands of dollars worth rockets and throw them in Afghanistan. The government and the press are not honest with the people because they have set up camps for the enemies of Pakistan in those areas and say that Pakistan is being attacked from within our territory. No one knows that the presence of many criminals among the immigrants, along with the millions of unemployed immigrants in Pakistan, are a burden on its shoulders. It seems that Pakistan’s inherent duty is to do good for us.
In addition, we have given consulates to India, which is the enemy of Pakistan, in Pakistan’s border towns. We have favored the sea-routes through to Iran, only to go against Pakistan. No one can justify why Iran and India should have consulates in Jalalabad and Kandahar. Do we have a consulate in Kurdistan, Tabriz and Hyderabad? Is there any other reason than to provoke Pakistan?
Let’s not blame our security weakness on the neighboring country and build trust between the two countries. Honestly, both countries will suffer from insecurity and terrorism, so we need to help each other in providing a lasting peaceful life for our people and ensure security, and prepare the ground for important economic cooperation in the region.
Pakistan has been working in the security sector between the two countries to some extent in recent years, such as pulling a barbed-wire fence between Afghanistan and Pakistan, which is effective in controlling terrorism and border crimes, and shows Pakistan’s goodwill, and ensures Afghanistan’s security. In fact, having a secure, calm and better managed border is in the interests of the two countries that have made many sacrifices in the fight against terrorism.
While Afghan officials have failed to take any action to manage border issues, they have always sought to hide their inability by cursing Pakistan’s constructive initiatives. If Afghan officials are serious about controlling border terrorism, which they claim is happening from Pakistan to Afghanistan, they must take the necessary steps to control the border situation.
To change perceptions, it is important that the Afghan government and people take a serious look at Pakistan. We must be honest with Pakistan first; the neighbor that has the closest cultural and border commonalities with us is far more important to us than any other country.
Aside from the security sector, the importance of trade and economic relations with Pakistan is not hidden from anyone. We could witness the influence of trade blockages last month as Pakistan closed its borders to Afghan travelers and businessmen due to the outbreak of the coronavirus. The prices of food and other necessary items suddenly rose, and as a result of Pakistan government’s efforts, the Chaman-Spin Boldak border was reopened to Afghan traders.
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has said his country is committed to supporting the Afghan people despite the global outbreak of the coronavirus. He tweeted that he had ordered the reopening of the Chaman-Spin Boldak crossing to allow the trade transportation to enter Afghanistan, indicating Pakistan’s goodwill towards Afghanistan.
Pakistan is Afghanistan’s shortest transit route to international open waters, which could help the economy of Afghanistan to a great extent, but what is important is that these economic relations are maintained within the framework of a strong strategy in mind. The national interests of both countries and peaceful coexistence should be achieved through the strategy. At present, Afghanistan can benefit from the existing capacities in Pakistan in various fields.
Pakistan is an agricultural and productive country, and Afghanistan, due to the lack of modern agricultural infrastructure, is unable to meet many of its needs in this area, so the best option to meet them is through Pakistan. Due to a long common border, roads, easy transportation, and affordable prices, Afghanistan’s access to Pakistan’s agricultural production is far more affordable than other options. As a result, we can say that Pakistan, with its cultural, linguistic, ethnic and religious commonalities with Afghanistan, is one of the most influential countries in the region in terms of economic growth and stability in Afghanistan.
(Sahar News)

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