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Pak-Afghan border at Chaman, Kharlachi to be closed on Election Day

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has announced to close its border with Afghanistan at Chaman and Kharlachi crossing points for two days coinciding with general election in the country.

“The crossing points on Pakistan-Afghanistan border at Chaman and Kharlachi will remain closed on July 24-25 2018, coinciding with general election in Pakistan,” said Foreign Office Spokesman Dr Muhammad Faisal.

“Torkham will however remain open for normal traffic,” the spokesman added.

At least 350,000 armed forces personnel will be deployed across different election areas on July 25.

The Election Commission of Pakistan had decided to seek assistance of the Pakistan Army and Rangers to ensure the smooth conduct of polls at sensitive polling stations.

Besides, police personnel will also be deployed inside and outside polling stations to ensure implementation of the ECP’s code of conduct.

In a recent statement, secretary ECP Babar Yaqoob cleared ‘misconceptions’ going rounds after he asserted that the “Army deployed for elections throughout Pakistan will perform its duty under the supervision of presiding officer.”

He had apprised the Senate Standing Committee on Interior and censured the erroneous impression that armed forces will work in an independent manner on the election day.

“If someone attempts to fill ballot boxes, then army personnel will first inform Returning Officer or Presiding Officer,” ECP official said.

Troops will only aid in holding peaceful polls, he informed the Senate’s interior committee while citing that nearly 20,000 polling stations have been declared sensitive in a meeting of National Counter Terrorism Authority.

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