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Last Updated: Wednesday, 16 July, 2003, 10:15 GMT 11:15 UK
Afghan-Pakistan border inquiry
Afghan-Pakistan border near the Khyber Pass
The long border is poorly marked
Afghanistan and Pakistan have agreed to send a joint team to investigate alleged incursions by Pakistani forces.

The decision was made in Kabul on Tuesday at a meeting of a trilateral commission that includes US officials and focuses on regional security.

Afghanistan claims that Pakistani troops operating on the border to try to stop suspected Taleban and al-Qaeda fugitives from carrying out cross-border attacks crossed into Afghanistan. Pakistan denies the claims.

On Tuesday, about 200 Afghans protested against the alleged border intrusions, while Pakistan's prime minister said he was saddened by the deterioration in relations between the neighbours.

The team will investigate the clashes within a week, a statement from the trilateral commission said.

The committee also said it had discussed progress in combating threats from al-Qaeda and supporters of Afghanistan's former Taleban regime.

Afghan officials says both groups are launching attacks from the mountains on the poorly marked border.

Over the past week few weeks, Afghan and Pakistani troops have been exchanging small arms fire across the border.

US special envoy to Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, said he was encouraged by Tuesday's discussions.

"What's important is that these two countries have a good cooperative relationship," Mr Khalilzad said.

"The futures of these two countries are interconnected."

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