ISLAMABAD, Oct. 17 (Xinhua) -- The United States shifted hundreds of its troops to the Afghan area bordering North Waziristan on Sunday along with heavy arms and gunship helicopters and sealed the Pak-Afghan border for all types of movement.
Tribesmen living in the border areas said Afghan and U.S. authorities had clamped a curfew in the Gurbaz area of Afghanistan 's Khost province and started house-to-house searches. The abrupt deployment of U.S. forces near the border area with Pakistan has escalated tension in the militancy-plagued North Waziristan tribal region as U.S. forces immediately sealed the main Ghulam Khan- Khost highway for traffic. This stranded more than 900 loaded trucks, including those carrying NATO consignments, and passenger vehicles the whole day.
Pakistani security officials and tribal sources in Ghulam Khan area said U.S. forces had arrived there during the night between Saturday and Sunday and occupied nearby hilltops and established observation posts. Sources said U.S. forces had set up a huge military base across the border and shifted gunship helicopters, heavy tanks, long-range artillery guns and other heavy weapons to the border area.
Pakistani security officials in North Waziristan confirmed the latest development and said they were monitoring the situation on the border with Afghanistan. However, they did not want to publicly comment on the closing of the Pak-Afghan border by U.S. forces, which caused traffic jams on the Pakistani side.
Government functionaries in Miramshah, the headquarters of North Waziristan, said more than 900 heavy loaded vehicles carrying various items to Afghanistan had been stranded on the Ghulam Khan road. Tribesmen in North Waziristan were concerned about the arrival of U.S. forces at their doors, but vowed to render every sacrifice for the defense of their homeland in case foreign troops crossed over into Pakistan.