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Iran Press TV

India, Pakistan temporarily close border after bomb blast

Iran Press TV

Mon Nov 3, 2014 1:59PM GMT

India and Pakistan have temporarily closed their only road border crossing following a deadly bomb attack on the Pakistani side of the border.

Officials say no travelers or trade will be allowed through the frontier until further notice.

'The crossing will remain closed until we complete a combing operation in the vicinity,' Punjab provincial police chief, Mushtaq Sukhera, said on Monday.

At least 60 people were killed and more than 130 others injured after a pro-Taliban militant blew up his explosives in a crowd watching a flag-lowering ceremony at the Wagah border near the city of Lahore on Sunday.

A pro-Taliban militant group reportedly claimed responsibility for the deadly attack. The group said the attack was carried out in response to the Pakistani army's actions against their positions in tribal areas.

The attack did not cause any casualties or property damage on the Indian side of the border.

However, India has beefed up security in the region for fear of more attacks.

On Sunday, Indian Border Security Force (BSF) chief DK Pathak said his officers had undertaken 'coordination' meetings with all intelligence, security, and state government authorities in Punjab.

"Our side is safe, we are alert, have increased our security and are in constant touch with district officials and state police," said Ashok Kumar, the BSF inspector general.

This is while an unnamed Indian Home Ministry official said that New Delhi's external intelligence agency, Research and Analysis Wing, had received intelligence inputs about two weeks prior to the attack, "indicating that the flag-lowering might be targeted by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan."

The Pakistani army has been fighting since June to demolish bases belonging to the pro-Taliban militants in the tribal areas. The operation has forced hundreds of thousands of civilians out of their homes.The Pakistani army says it has killed thousands of militants since it started its clean-up operations along its border with Afghanistan.

The militant groups in Pakistan have carried out numerous attacks against Pakistani security forces and civilians.

Many Pakistanis have lost their lives in bombings and other militant attacks since 2001, when the Pakistani government entered an alliance with Washington in its so-called war on terror.

SF/HMV/HRB



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