A large number of NATO supply trucks are parked at Sheerin Jinnah Colony, Photo by Yasir Kazmi, Karachi, Pakistan.
Several truck owners and drivers are refusing to take NATO’s cargo anywhere, and are going to remain in Karachi until they are paid, with one owner of 310 trucks estimating that he was owed $15 million.
The US and other NATO nations had some 1,500 trucks constantly ferrying war goods to Afghanistan through the Karachi route, and a lot of those trucks were just kept waiting for months and months as US officials repeatedly predicted a deal to reopen the route was imminent.
Apparently with the trucks just sitting idle, NATO didn’t feel like they had to pay them. Since the whole reason the border was closed was because the US attacked Pakistani military bases then refused to apologize for almost nine months, the drivers clearly don’t feel they should be the ones losing money on the deal.
After Taliban militants torched over 200 Nato vehicles on the outskirts of Peshawar, Karachi-based transporters continue to be affected. Although the limited transport of Nato supplies from Karachi to Peshawar – and from there on to Afghanistan – has resumed, local transporters remain afraid of retaliatory attacks by militants. Moreover, decreased Nato traffic has caused an already saturated local market to become more competitive.