The age-old problem of getting war materiel into occupied Afghanistan is once again rising for NATO, with the announcement that 4,000 supply trucks have effectively halted shipments through Pakistan as part of a strike.
The truckers delivering shipments to NATO in Afghanistan often did so as individual contractors in the past, but the Pakistani government has decided that, in order to “cut down on theft,” the truckers will no longer be allowed to contract individually, but will have to work for a handful of “authorized companies” on good terms with the Zardari government.
The truckers say that the new rules are corrupt and will cost them a large portion of the money they would normally earn from shipping into occupied Afghanistan, and so they are unwilling to do so until Pakistan reverses the ban.
NATO is so far refusing to comment on the latest halt of shipments, but in the past lack of access to Pakistan cost them $100 million per month, obliging them to use pricier overland routes through the former Soviet Union. This could be even more costly this time, as many NATO nations are shipping massive quantities of equipment back out of the country as part of the drawdown as well.
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