Nato hard at work making deals to beat the Khyber Pass trap

From The Times
December 13, 2008

Nato hard at work making deals to beat the Khyber Pass convoy trap

Jeremy Page, South Asia Correspondent
Nato plans to open a new supply route to Afghanistan through Russia and Central Asia in the next eight weeks following a spate of attacks on its main lifeline through Pakistan this year, Nato and Russian sources have told The Times.

Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, the former Soviet Central Asian states that lie between Russia and Afghanistan, have agreed in principle to the railway route and are working out the small print with Nato, the sources said.

“It'll be weeks rather than months,” said one Nato official. “Two months max.”

The “Northern Corridor” is expected to be discussed at an informal meeting next week between Dmitri Rogozin, Russia's ambassador to Nato, and Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, Nato's Secretary-General.

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The breakthrough reflects Nato and US commanders' growing concern about the attacks on their main supply line, which runs from the Pakistani port of Karachi via the Khyber Pass to Kabul and brings in 70 per cent of their supplies. The rest is either driven from Karachi via the border town of Chaman to southern Afghanistan - the Taleban's heartland - or flown in at enormous expense in transport planes that are in short supply.

“We're all increasingly concerned,” Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters on Wednesday. “But in that concern, we've worked pretty hard to develop options.”
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Oh_Bollox said:
Bloody hell. Ivan's looking to earn some brownie points?

Pity the man whose name is 'Hoop' though.
If it wasn't a Dutch name, it would have to be an act of sexual diviancy of MDN proportions.... 'Jaap de Hoop Scheffer'.... :roll:

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