In the shadow of the Durand Line security, stability, and the future of Pakistan and Afghanistan
Janjua, Muhammad Qaiser.
Berger, Marcos (Mark T.)
Borer, Douglas A.
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The Durand Line (Pak-Afghan border) gained international attention during the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The government of Afghanistan's refusal to acknowledge the Durand Line as the official border with Pakistan has serious implications in relation to Global War on Terror (GWOT), especially in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). The atmosphere of misunderstanding and mistrust in relation to the border between the two neighbors for the last six decades casts a shadow over any effort to achieve security and stability in the region. Pakistan's weak hold over FATA and Baluchistan has provided space in which extremist groups, such as Al-Qaeda and the Taliban, have been able to establish bases, training camps, seek refuge and currently conduct cross-border attacks into Afghanistan. This thesis looks at the history and contemporary significance of the Durand Line in detail. It argues that a key imperative of future operations in region is the need for the governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan to come to an agreement that delineates the official border (currently the Durand Line) between the two nation-states. Until there is a border that is recognized by all concerned, their ability to cooperate with each other and their allies deal with Al-Qaeda and the Taliban and a range of other issues remains profoundly constrained. The future of Afghanistan and Pakistan is dependent on a range of levels with dealing with the unresolved border issue that has hung over both countries since Pakistan was carved out of British India in 1947.
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