ISLAMABAD - Sartaj Aziz, the National Security and Foreign Affairs Advisor to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, has said that Islamabad is looking to impose greater control over the country’s porous western borders with Afghanistan.

Aziz said that Pakistan will expedite visa issuance process and special passes will be issued to people from the border region in a bid to facilitate their cross-border movements.

“Even now we issue 1,000 or 2,000 visas to the Afghans every day. This is a process and we will know the outline of the new border management once Afghanistan and Pakistan work out its details.

“We cannot let this border remain porous. We now have only two legal border crossings. We will increase them and will facilitate the legal movement of people with visas or border permits,” Aziz told Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RFL).

Aziz said the Pakistani and Afghan security officials would soon hold a meeting to discuss the issue of regulating cross-border movement.

Aziz said Islamabad wanted to address Afghan concerns about cross-border attacks, and India had also been approached to refrain from providing support to rival Afghan factions after the withdrawal of Nato forces from Afghanistan next year.

He said, “We have told India that supporting different factions in Afghanistan is not good,” he said. “What Afghans decide among themselves is acceptable to everyone. [India] having one favourite, and Pakistan having another, as well as our interference, does not help the situation in Afghanistan.”

Kabul and Islamabad often accuse each other of sheltering insurgents. For more than six decades, their bilateral relations have been overshadowed by their colonial-era border, the Durand Line.

A workable border management agreement between the two neighbors could boost the prospects of peace in the two nations.