SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) — housands of Pakistanis have taken to the streets in the south of the country to protest against Islamabad’s decision to reopen NATO supply routes to neighboring Afghanistan, Press TV reports.
The demonstrators gathered in the port city of Karachi on Monday to vent their anger at the government’s decision.
The demonstration had been organized by Jamaat-e-Islami, Pakistan's most powerful Islamic political party.
Pakistan had been the main supply route for US-led forces occupying Afghanistan from October 2001 to November 2011, during which 150 to 200 trucks entered Afghanistan every day.
Islamabad closed the border crossings used to transfer NATO supplies to Afghanistan in November 2011, after 24 Pakistani soldiers were killed in US-led airstrikes on two checkpoints at the Afghan border.
On July 4, Islamabad agreed to reopen the border crossings after US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she was “sorry for the losses suffered by the Pakistani military.”
However, from July 4 to 24, only a few supply trucks were allowed to cross into Afghanistan from Pakistan.
On July 24, Pakistan cut the supply line again over security concerns after armed men assaulted a convoy of NATO trucks and killed a driver.
Pakistan reestablished the NATO supply line to US-led troops occupying Afghanistan on August 4, allowing 14 supply trucks to cross into the neighboring country from its northwestern border post at Torkham.
In June, NATO reached agreements with Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Kazakhstan to allow the Western military alliance to transport vehicles and other military hardware from Afghanistan.
NATO previously made an agreement with Russia on an exit route, permitting the alliance to send tens of thousands of vehicles and supplies from Afghanistan to Europe later this year. —www.shafaqna.com/english
Source: Press TV