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Afghans protest over border clashes, Pakistan calls for calm

Monday, May 06, 2013 - 01:10

May 6 - Afghans take to the streets over clashes at the border with Pakistan as Islamabad calls for calm. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.

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Afghans take to the streets over recent clashes at the border with Pakistan. The outrage comes as Islamabad is calling for calm as tensions mount between the neighbors, both key U.S. allies. (SOUNDBITE) (Dari) TRIBAL ELDER AND ORGANIZER OF PROTEST ANWAR KHAN SAYING: "I call on enemies of Afghanistan to say that today - we are gathered here to promise and swear that the strong people of Afghanistan are ready to stand up in order to defend their country and their soil." The clashes came after Pakistani troops tried to repair a gate on the border, where last week an Afghan border policeman was killed in an exchange of fire. Pakistani foreign ministry spokesman Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry. (SOUNDBITE) ( English) FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN AIZAZ AHMED CHAUDHRY , SAYING: "We believe that the fight against terrorism requires cooperation and coordination among Afghanistan, Pakistan and all stakeholders. The president of Afghanistan himself had asked for Pakistan's support to the reconciliation process with the Taliban, and we responded positively. We believe that the national reconciliation process in Afghanistan between all groups is the only way forward." Pakistan is seen as vital in bringing stability to Afghanistan as most Western forces prepare to withdraw by the end of next year.

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Afghans protest over border clashes, Pakistan calls for calm

Monday, May 06, 2013 - 01:10