Roadside bomb kills two Pakistani soldiers near Afghan border

QUETTA, PAKISTAN (AP) — A roadside bomb exploded near a Pakistani paramilitary vehicle in restive southwestern Baluchistan province yesterday, killing two soldiers who were clearing the area for fencing the border with Afghanistan, two intelligence officials said.

Two other persons were wounded in the blast near the Chaman border, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorised to speak to media on the record. No group immediately claimed responsibility. Army and other government officials were also not immediately available for comment.

However, such attacks are common in various parts of the country bordering Afghanistan, where troops have been fencing the border for the past several years.

Pakistan said it is fencing the border to stop the movement of militants.

Pakistan and Afghanistan are divided by the 2,400-kilometre Durand Line, drawn by British rulers in 1896.

Kabul does not recognise it as an international border, causing friction between the two neighbours.

Baluchistan province has also been the scene of a low-level insurgency by small separatists groups who have been demanding more autonomy and a greater share in the region’s natural resources, such as gas and oil.