20 NATO supply trucks torched in Quetta
When Pakistan shut down the Chaman and Torkham (Khyber Pass) border crossings to NATO supply convoys in the wake of the US airstrike that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers in Mohmand, it was just a matter of time before the Taliban and other groups began attacking the trucks. Today, in Quetta, nearly 20 NATO supply and fuel trucks were destroyed while parked at a compound. From Dawn:
Up to 20 trucks were destroyed in a rocket attack Thursday on a Nato trucking terminal in Quetta supplying troops in neighbouring Afghanistan, police said.
A number of oil tankers and goods trucks were parked in the temporary terminal after Pakistan shut down supply lines for Nato forces in anger at a deadly cross-border air strike which killed 24 Pakistani soldiers.
Senior police official Malik Arshad told AFP that unknown gunmen fired bullets and a rocket at the Nato oil tankers and the ensuing blaze engulfed 15 to 20 vehicles in Quetta, capital of the southwestern province of Baluchistan.
Last year, when the border crossings were closed under similar circumstances to NATO convoys for 10 days, more than 200 NATO fuel tankers and supply trucks and containers were savaged in major attacks against convoys and at rest stops in Baluchistan and Khyber-Paktunkwha provinces, as well as just outside the cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi. Some US officials believed the Pakistani military gave various Islamist groups the green light to hit the convoys in order to raise the pressure on NATO.