The Northern Distribution Network, the key re-supply route for US and NATO forces fighting in Afghanistan, is set to experience a spike in traffic due to the closure of the Pakistani-Afghan border. But it will take several weeks for the United States and NATO to work out the logistics of rerouting cargo.
Islamabad closed border crossings to Afghanistan in late November in response to a NATO attack on a frontier post that left 24 Pakistani soldiers dead. The Northern Distribution Network (NDN) is already a vital link in Afghanistan’s supply chain. But to date it has not operated at maximum capacity. Contracted logistics firms, already on standby to start moving goods out of Afghanistan, are preparing for an imminent “all systems go” test of their capabilities, a commercial source told Eurasianet.org.
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Deirdre Tynan is a Bishkek-based reporter specializing in Central Asian affairs.