09 May 2017

News Story: Concerns Mount Over Possible Border Closures

By Zabiullah Jhanmal

Officials from the Afghan Chamber of Commerce and Industries (ACCI) on Sunday said they are worried that once again border crossings between Afghanistan and Pakistan will be closed to traders amid rising tension among border guards on both sides of the Durand Line.

They said government should take immediate action to prevent any possible border closure.
“Border closure is not in favor of either country and the Afghan government needs to take action to prevent any such scenario,” said Tawfiq Davari, ACCI’s deputy head.

However, according to Article 24 of the business and transit agreement between Afghanistan and Pakistan, neither country has the right to close trade routes. Article 5 of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreement on Tariffs and Traders also states that all members of the organization have an obligation to keep its trade routes open to other members of the organization. Both Pakistan and Afghanistan are members of the WTO.

ACCI officials also said according to the Geneva Water Convention and the United Nations, Afghanistan has the right to prevent the closure of its borders with Pakistan.

Read the full story at TOLOnews