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Kabul Summons Pakistani Ambassador As Afghans Mark Independence Day

An Afghan man holds an Afghanistan national flag during a ceremony marking the country's 96th Independence Day in Jalalabad on August 19.

Afghanistan has summoned Pakistan’s ambassador to explain a battle between the security forces of the two countries that killed up to eight Afghan border police.

In a statement issued late on August 18, Afghanistan’s Foreign Ministry said it expressed serious objections to heavy artillery firing by Pakistani forces against border posts in the Afghan province of Kunar.

The ministry said “continuation of such movement by Pakistan’s military will have adverse effects on bilateral relations.”

Afghan police in Kunar’s Nari district said Pakistani troops started shelling across the border on August 17 after they had found one of their border guards dead at an outpost on Pakistan’s side of the border.

Angry Afghans voiced their frustration on the streets of Kabul on August 19 during Independence Day celebrations, saying they are also celebrating against Pakistan.

The Independence Day celebrations mark the anniversary of the Anglo-Afghan Treaty of 1919 -- a temporary armistice with British colonial forces that gave Afghanistan self-determiniation in foreign affairs.

With reporting by Reuters