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100s of trucks, truckers stranded at Pak-Afghan border

Islamabad, March 30 (IANS) Hundreds of Pakistani truckers and their helpers were stranded on the Afghan side of the border at two main border crossings despite Prime Minister Imran Khan orders for opening the border for good transport, it was reported on Monday.

The Chaman and Torkham border crossings with Afghanistan and the Wagah border crossing with India were closed earlier this month in an attempt to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, which has infected nearly 1,600 people and killed 16 of them, The Express Tribune reported.

The border closures have now been extended for two more weeks.

Zahidullah, a member of the Afghan Transit Standing Committee, told The Express Tribune that around 1,500 trucks carrying shipping containers are stuck at Chaman and 800 at Torkham since last month.

Additionally, around 1,000 trailers were stranded on the Afghan side of the border to enter Pakistan.

“They are over 6,600 drivers and their helpers in these trucks and their life is at risk,” he said, adding that the drivers have run out of cash and food and are living in miserable conditions.

“They are selling oil and tyres of their vehicles to meet their needs.”

One of the drivers stranded at Chaman said he has been stuck at the border crossing since last month due to which his family is facing immense difficulties and they do not have cash to buy food.

“We demand that the prime minister and the army chief direct the authorities concerned to let us cross the border,” the driver told The Express Tribune.

–IANS

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