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Pakistan summons Afghan diplomat over border shelling

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Pakistan has summoned an Afghan diplomat over “unprovoked” artillery fire at their border as tensions have ratcheted up between the South Asian neighbours in the past several weeks.

“Afghan Chargé d’Affaires in Islamabad was called to the foreign ministry and Pakistan’s strong condemnation was conveyed over recent incidents of unprovoked cross-border shelling resulting in a loss of life, injuries and damage to property,” the Pakistani Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Friday.

Border tensions between the South Asian neighbours have risen since the Taliban returned to power last year.

“It was reiterated that protection of civilians remained the responsibility of both sides and that recurrence of these incidents must be prevented,” it said.

At least six people were killed and more than a dozen wounded on Sunday in what Pakistan said was unprovoked fire from Afghan forces near the southern border town of Chaman in Balochistan province. A Taliban member was killed and 10 people were wounded on the Afghan side. A second round of shelling wounded at least 16 Pakistan civilians on Thursday.

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