In June, former Afghan President Hamid Karzai in an interview echoed Afghan sentiments that the Durand Line is not and will not be accepted as a border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. The reason cited is that it was a result of British imperialism was arbitrarily drawn when the Afghan state was weak. Successive Afghan governments have been refusing to formally recognise it while Pakistan refers to it simply as the Pak-Afghan border. As far as Pakistan is concerned, it is a settled issue - and that is the truth.

Colonial exploitation is an unfortunate historical fact, but these borders are now internationally and nationally accepted. It is unfathomable what Afghanistan wants to do with its stance. Do they want to open a border dispute, because the UN Security Council will easily strike that down based on precedent? Do they want KPK to accede to them? And if yes, what about the rest of the line; do they accept only parts of the line? Do they want a porous border so that they can continue to blame Pakistan for their home-grown terrorism? The truth is probably all of the above, with a few heaped spoons of ego to boot.

As a result of the Durand Line agreement, Afghanistan gave up its claims over certain Pakhtun tribal lands and parts of Balochistan. It also agreed to a thin strip of Afghanistan known as Wakhan to link it with China and separate it from the Russian Empire as the British Raj was wary of Czarist designs in Central Asia. Key word; they “agreed” to all this - under duress, due to weakness - but that is the lot of weaker states. Did Taiwan not lose international recognition as the legitimate Republic of China? Did Pakistan not lose territories in the Punjab that were promised to it?

The Afghan government has yet to produce evidence to back its claim. In fact, Afghanistan has refrained from taking this issue to the UN, the International Court of Justice or any other world forum because of the weakness of its legal case. Meanwhile, they use it against Pakistan, and keep twisting the knife. The US, however, recognises the Durand Line as a permanent border between Pakistan and Afghanistan, and on Tuesday the urged Islamabad and Kabul to work together to eliminate safe havens in the border region. Maybe Afghan politicians can tell us how to end cross border terrorism without a closed and monitored border once they stop blaming Pakistan for their own demons.