Advertisement

You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

U.S. stops shipping from Afghanistan during protests

Dec. 3, 2013 - 09:41PM   |  
  • Filed Under

WASHINGTON — The United States said Tuesday it had stopped shipments of military equipment out of Afghanistan, citing the risk to truckers from protests along part of the route in neighboring Pakistan.

There have been anti-U.S. demonstrations in Pakistan in recent days calling for an end to the American drone program that targets militants. So U.S. officials said that they had ordered truckers under U.S. contract to park at holding areas inside Afghanistan temporarily to avoid going there.

Pentagon spokesman Mark Wright said the order affects outgoing shipments that the military calls “retrograde cargo” — equipment and other goods being sent home from military units as their numbers are reduced in Afghanistan.

“We are aware protests have affected one of the primary commercial transit routes between Pakistan and Afghanistan,” he said. “We have voluntarily halted U.S. shipments of retrograde cargo … from Torkham Gate through Karachi to ensure the safety of the drivers contracted to move our equipment.”

Many supplies coming into Afghanistan for use by remaining troops were long-ago redirected to alternate routes, going through other countries, due to previous problems with Pakistan.

“While we favor shipping cargo via Pakistan because of (lower) cost, we have built flexibility and redundancy into our overall system of air, sea and ground routes to transport cargo into and out of Afghanistan,” Wright said.

CIA drone strikes in Pakistan have long been a sensitive subject, with officials regularly criticizing them in public as a violation of the country’s sovereignty. The issue is more complicated, however, since the government is known to have supported at least some of the attacks in the past.

Routes through Pakistan have been closed in the past. The Pakistani government blocked the routes for seven months following U.S. airstrikes that accidentally killed two dozen soldiers on the Afghan border in November 2011. Pakistan finally reopened the routes after the U.S. apologized.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan
Rates

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.


This Week's Marine Corps Times

This Week's Marine Corps Times

Get ready to rock A&S
MARSOC uses applicants' feedback to redesign workout prep program

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

Classifieds
MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.
Woman who cried rape
(3 replies)
   Last Post: TJMAC77SP
        May 3, 2014 1:32 PM
   Last Post: garhkal
        May 1, 2014 5:03 PM
Cliven Bundy
(45 replies)
   Last Post: Chief_KO
        Apr 26, 2014 9:49 AM
Handbooks

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook