Pakistan extends Chaman border closure with Afghanistan through March 16 due to expanded measures related to COVID-19.

Severity: Warning Alert

The locations affected by this alert are:

  • Peshawar
  • Kandahar
  • Jalalabad
  • Quetta

This alert began 09 Mar 2020 10:45 GMT and is scheduled to expire 16 Mar 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: Border closure, increased health screenings
  • Location(s): Chaman border crossing, Pakistan-Afghanistan border (map)
  • Time Frame: Through at least March 16
  • Impact: Likely commercial and transport disruptions

Summary
Pakistan authorities have extended the Chaman land border closure with Afghanistan through March 16 as part of expanded precautionary measures to diminish the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). The border crossing, located in Balochistan Province, was initially closed for all travel and commercial activities March 1-9. The other main border crossing with Afghanistan, located in Torkham, remains open, though officials set up medical screenings at the crossing. Starting March 7, Islamabad has ended the 14-day closure of the Taftan border crossing with Iran.

The border closure extension will likely cause continued trade and commerce disruptions through March 16. Authorities may enact quarantine measures for individuals traveling from Afghanistan with symptoms of COVID-19. Increased congestion is possible at the Torkham border due to the Chaman closure.

Advice
Plan for commercial and transport disruptions and source alternative supply and land transport routes if using the Chaman border crossing. Allow additional travel time entering Pakistan due to health screenings.

Consider delaying traveling if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may result in increased scrutiny and delays. Exercise basic health precautions, especially handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable.

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