Pakistan has granted asylum to 46 Afghan soldiers in the northern Chitral region at the request of the Afghan national army, Radio Pakistan reported on Monday, citing the Pakistani army’s press service.
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The Afghan army reportedly asked for shelter and safe passage for its staffers because they could no longer maintain control over their posts on the border due to security threats emanating from clashes with the Taliban.
The Afghan military has been provided with food, shelter, and medical care in accordance with established military norms, the broadcaster said. They will subsequently be returned to the Afghan authorities, according to the report.
Violence has been on the rise in Afghanistan in recent weeks as the Taliban have stepped up their offensive after international troops began withdrawing from the country in May.
The troop withdrawal was one of the points of the agreement that the Islamist movement and the United States reached in Doha in February of last year.
Meanwhile, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) said that the number of civilian fatalities in Afghanistan hit a new record of 5,183 in the first half of the year, especially after the exit of US-led NATO troops.
Earlier, the BBC reported that over 1,000 Afghan soldiers had fled to neighboring Tajikistan after battling the Taliban. The soldiers withdrew to “save their own lives”, according to a statement by Tajikistan’s border guard.
Later, Tajikistan said that it had returned 280 Afghan soldiers back to Afghanistan after they crossed the border to escape the Taliban onslaught.
“Only 280 Afghan service people and border guards who crossed into Tajikistan during hostilities have been sent back to Kabul. There are 1,300 Afghans [soldiers] in Tajikistan,” a military source told Sputnik.