The two major ethnical groups on the Northern and North-western frontier of the Indian sub-continent have shared both similarities and obvious contrasts in their centuries old history together. Often caught in tussle between world powers, the history of this relationship is fascinating just as much as insightful into the enthusiasm of these two distinct groups rich in culture, language and past. The first and perhaps the most significant war between the two is known as Afghan-Baloch war (1757) which occurred between the troops of the Baloch saint, Noori Naseer Khan and Afghan legendary general, Ahmed Shah Abdali. The fight reached its decisive conclusion with “The Treaty of Kalat” aka “Treaty of Non-interference” signed between the two warring factions in 1758 and opened another part of companionship between the Baloch and Afghans. By the arrangement of Kalat, both the veterans concurred not to meddle in the internal issues of other and Baloch under their pioneer Naseer Khan Noori accompanied the Afghan ruler Ahmed Shah Abdali in several battles against Iranians and Indians including the 1795 war in Khorasan, the third Panipat war in 1761 and decisive and gruesome mortal blow to the Sikhs of Punjab in 1765.
Both the nations have lots of ethnic and historical similarities. Pashtuns and Baloch live in tribal system with unique and distinct cultural identities.  Historically, both nations faced same fate after the colonization of subcontinent by the British in 19th century. Being located at strategic positions, both the nations paid a heavy price for it. Afghanistan become a buffer zone between the Russian and British Empire in their Great Game of stopping each other’s territorial expansion. And Balochistan was continuously attacked by the British because of its strategic importance to bring it under the control of British Raj. Both the nations fought the imperial power and gave a tough time in the region before the mighty Britishers could finally achieve their geo political objectives successfully.
When the British left the region after the 2nd World War, it also left behind its legacies of Durand Line and Goldsmith Line which divides Pashtuns and Balochs between Pakistan and Afghanistan respectively. The Durand Line controversy, an issue that still infuriates the Afghans, remains a prick in any negotiations between Pakistan and Afghanistan. For the Afghan side, it is an imperialist legacy that was forged with the sole purpose of dividing not just the Pashtuns but their strong allies Balochistan as well, in the form of another imperialist relic, the Goldsmith Line.


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