Pakistan closes Afghan supply route

Supplies to foreign forces in Afghanistan cut as Islamabad begins military action.

    Pakistan says a major offensive against suspected pro-Taliban fighters began on Tuesday [AFP]

    Hayat confirmed Pakistani security forces had launched "an operation against militants and armed groups in Jamrud" - the gateway to the Khyber Pass.

    'Giant operation'

    Pro-Taliban fighters have carried out a string of attacks in recent months aimed at choking off supplies transported to foreign forces in landlocked Afghanistan through northwest Pakistan.

    Hundreds of Nato and US-led coalition vehicles were destroyed in a series of raids earlier this month.

    "This is a giant operation. It will continue until we achieve our objective," Hayat said, adding that the operation could be extended beyond the Jamrud region if deemed necessary.

    Alongside putting a stop to attacks on Nato and US supply vehicles, Hayat said the operation had been launched to tackle a spate of kidnappings for ransom in the tribal belt that straddles the Pakistan-Afghan border. 

    Hayat said: "We have 26 targets, we will eliminate their [pro-Taliban and al-Qaeda fighters] hideouts."

    Two weeks ago, several haulage companies in Pakistan refused to undertake journeys along the 50km route, saying the security of their drivers could not be guaranteed.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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