More NATO Supplies Destroyed as Peshawar Attacks Continue

Pakistan Deploys Frontier Corps to Protect Supply Terminal

by Jason Ditz, December 12, 2008

Militants in the Pakistani city of Peshawar continued tonight what has been already a week-long string of attacks on supply depots holding NATO trucks and containers throwing the reliability of NATO’s chief source of supplies to the military effort in Afghanistan into serious doubt.

In the latest attack, militants launched a rocket at Bilal Terminal in Peshawar at 3 AM local time Saturday morning, lobbing petrol bombs and destroying ten NATO supply trucks and 15 containers. The series of attacks, which began last weekend, has destroyed hundreds of supply trucks scheduled to cross the Khyber Pass into Afghanistan.

After another attack last night, which destroyed 25 trucks, Pakistan announced that they would deploy their paramilitary organization, the Frontier Corps (FC) to guard the terminals from attack. It was not immediately apparent whether or not FC forces were present at Bilal Terminal during the latest attack.

The Khyber Pass route is the source of roughly three-quarters of the supplies for international fores in Afghanistan. Though the US has insisted the Peshawar attacks are militarily insignificant, they have been seen increasingly relying on airdrops to circumvent dangerous overland routes. NATO is also reportedly close to a deal for a rail route through Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, raising the possibility that they may soon begin to rely on the less convenient, but considerably safer Northern Corridor route.

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