Pakistan Temporarily Closes Consulate in Afghanistan

TEHRAN (Tasnim) - Pakistan temporarily closed its consulate in the eastern Afghan city of Jalalabad because of "intervention" by the provincial governor and a lack of security, but an Afghan official said Saturday there was simply a misunderstanding and the matter would be resolved.

Pakistan Temporarily Closes Consulate in Afghanistan

In a letter to the Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pakistan's embassy in Kabul requested that the governor of Nangarhar province refrain from interfering in the functioning of the consulate, AP reported.

The Pakistani mission also requested that Afghan authorities restore security on the premises. It said the consulate will remain closed until security arrangements are completed to the embassy's satisfaction.

Sebghatullah Ahmadi, spokesman for the Afghan Foreign Ministry, said there was a misunderstanding which caused concern among staff at the Pakistani consulate in Jalalabad. He did not elaborate.

"We have already held meetings with Pakistani officials from their embassy in Kabul, soon the problem will be solved," he said.

The closure of the Jalalabad mission is a reflection of strained relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan. Both blame each other of harboring militants along the porous border.

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