Home Latest News Torkham Border Reopened after FIA Staff Clashes with FC Personnel

Torkham Border Reopened after FIA Staff Clashes with FC Personnel

Six men injured after staff of both organizations blame each other of corruption, interference

by Staff Report

File photo of Torkham border crossing

Six members of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) were injured on Sunday after a clash between them and personnel of the Frontier Corps at the Torkham border, triggering a four-hour-long closure of the crossing.

Normal pedestrian traffic at the border resumed after senior officials of both organizations resolved the conflict, which both sides have offered conflicting accounts of, accusing each other of corruption and undue interference in their official responsibilities.

According to the immigration staff belonging to the FIA, the border guards “forced” them to allow an Afghan national to cross Torkham in violation of standard immigration formalities. They alleged that the Afghan national in question possessed a fake travel document, adding the security personnel had thrashed the FIA officer who refused to allow the foreigner to enter Pakistan.

Subsequently, per the FIA, a group of security personnel armed with rifles and batons entered the FIA premises and started beating up their staff, injuring six of them. Video footage of the clash went viral on social media, showing security personnel beating FIA staff with sticks, as civilians scrambled for safety.

By contrast, the FC statement has accused the FIA staff of allowing Afghan nationals to enter Pakistan without legal travel documents after taking bribes. It alleged that border forces had arrested two Afghan nationals two days prior after they were “cleared” by FIA immigration staff without being entered into the official record. In its statement, the organization claimed the FIA staff had retaliated by restricting their approach to its premises, boosting the number of Afghans at immigration centers.

“The immigration officials misbehaved with security officials and used objectionable language when they were asked to expedite the immigration process,” claimed the statement, adding efforts to resolve the situation through the interference of senior FIA officials failed to achieve desired results. It said investigations were underway to determine the “facts” for Sunday’s incident, adding efforts were underway to ensure an end to all types of illegal border crossings.

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