PESHAWAR: The Pak-Afghan border in Torkham will remain closed for pedestrians till further orders, according to an official notification.

The decision has been taken under the light of the decisions of the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on Tuesday which discussed the border situation with Afghanistan. The notification said the border will remain closed for pedestrians owing to the increasing ratio of coronavirus cases in neighbouring Afghanistan. The Afghan students enrolled in different universities in Pakistan will be separately informed about the decision.

The Pakistani citizens stranded in Afghanistan may come back to Pakistan under the standard operating procedures (SOPs). Critical patients from Afghanistan wanting to come for treatment to Pakistan will also be exempted from the ban.

The notification further said that the Afghan citizens stranded in Pakistan may go to Afghanistan if they want. The cargo and trade vehicles from both sides will be allowed to cross the border from June 17.

34 Pakistanis diagnosed with corona at Torkham

The notification about keeping the border closed for pedestrians came as 34 more Pakistani citizens coming from Afghanistan were diagnosed with coronavirus at Torkham border.

The Rescue 1122 teams have shifted the corona patients to District Headquarters Hospital Landikotal. These patients will remain quarantined at the DHQ Hospital for eight days and will be allowed to go home after full recovery from the infection.

Medical Superintendent of Landikotal Hospital Nek Dad Afridi said doctors and other staff for corona patients have been assigned duties at the corona ward. He said further steps will also be taken for corona patients.

The coronavirus situation in Afghanistan during its third wave is getting out of hand as the ratio is increasing to an alarming extent and hospitals in the neighbouring country are running out of space for such patients. The quick spread of the virus in Afghanistan is mainly attributed to the lackluster attitude of people towards precautionary measures and vaccination. Delay in arrival of vaccines has also complicated the matter. Healthcare facilities in Afghanistan are depleted as Afghanistan mostly depends on foreign aid for this purpose, and the government is seeking foreign help again to cope with the situation. Very few Afghans are taking the threat seriously.

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