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Afghanistan Accuses Pakistan Of Cross-Border Air Strikes As Abbasi Visits Kabul


Ongoing anti-Taliban operation in Dangam district near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border in eastern Kunar Province

Afghanistan accused Pakistan of launching air strikes that caused "huge financial damages" in its Kunar border province one day ahead of Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi's scheduled visit to Kabul on April 6.

Abassi is scheduled to hold talks with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on ongoing peace efforts and joint efforts to combat militants during a daylong visit.

Afghanistan's Foreign Affairs Ministry on April 5 charged that Pakistani jets dropped four bombs in Kunar's Dangam district but made no mention of casualties.

"Afghanistan warns that continuing violations of international norms ... will have further consequences on the relations between the two countries," the ministry said.

Pakistan early on April 6 rejected as "baseless" the allegation that it violated Afghan airspace, however.

In a statement, Islamabad's Foreign Affairs Ministry said Pakistan's security forces were countering militant groups based in Afghanistan that launched attacks across the border.

Military officials of the two countries met on April 5 in the Pakistani city of Rawalpindi, where Pakistan shared details of the operations with Afghanistan, the ministry said. The operations took place on the Pakistani side of the border, it said.

Afghanistan should focus on securing on its side of the border and refrain from the "blame game," the Pakistani ministry said.

Abbasi’s visit to Kabul will be his his first since becoming prime minister last year.

Ahead of his planned trip, Abbasi said that "nobody wants peace in Afghanistan more than Pakistan because we are the most affected" by terrorism.

Based on reporting by Reuters and Radio Mashaal

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