ISLAMABAD, DEC 15 (DNA) — A new book, entitled “Revisiting the Durand Line: Historical and Legal Perspectives” written by Dr Lutfur Rehman was launched at a ceremony held at the School of Politics and International Relations (SPIR), Quaid e Azam University, Islamabad.
The book focuses on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border dispute which has been a source of tension between the two countries for more than seven decades. The research in the book is unique in the sense that it contains all the original maps which were exchanged in Kabul in November 1893 following the border agreement between the ruler of Afghanistan Ameer Abdur Rahman Khan and British Indian official Mortimer Durand.
During the ceremony, Professor Dr Zafar Nawaz Jaspal from the School of Politics & International Relations (SPIR), presented his views on the book and highlighted the key aspects of Pakistan-Afghan relations, border security and illegal trade. Ambassador (r) Syed Abrar Hussain, Vice-Chairman of the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), also shared his insight on the issue.
According to the author, primary data have been extensively used to explain the real and true perspective of this border. This frontier was demarcated by joint boundary commissions from time to time. Reports of British commissioners have been consulted and quoted. This is perhaps the first time that these reports have been explored and utilized. It is generally believed that Ameer Abdur Rahman signed the treaty under “duress”.
The book dispels the impression. It also contains the history of Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s tribal districts (former FATA), and the former princely states of Chitral, Dir, and Swat. Different phases of Afghan history and the status of the Durand Agreement under international law have also been discussed. Furthermore, international conventions have been cited to elucidate the issue and to facilitate the readers. — DNA