NATO, Russia to expand Afghan supply route

NATO already uses transit routes via Russia as alternative to its ambush-prone line through Pak.

Brussels: Officials say NATO and Russia are
nearing agreement on expanding an existing supply route to
Afghanistan.

The new accord would allow NATO to ship military
equipment through Russia back to Europe from Afghanistan as
the US-led force begins to draw down this year, officials and
diplomats said today, on condition of anonymity because they
are not permitted to speak publicly.

The alliance already uses transit routes through Russia
and Central Asian states as alternatives to its main,
ambush-prone logistics line through Pakistan. But current
arrangements allow only for one-way transport of non-lethal
supplies.

Just two years ago, the Pakistani route accounted for 90
percent of supplies. But the 140,000-strong force now receives
about 40 percent of its logistics via the so-called Northern
Lines of Communication.

PTI

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