News / Asia

    Suspected Militants Torch 27 Tankers Heading for Afghanistan

    Pakistani police officer stands guard on still smoldering oil trucks in Shikarpur, southern Pakistan, 01 Oct. 2010
    Pakistani police officer stands guard on still smoldering oil trucks in Shikarpur, southern Pakistan, 01 Oct. 2010

    Multimedia

    Robert Raffaele

    Pakistani officials say suspected militants in the country's south on Friday set fire to a convoy of tankers carrying fuel for foreign troops in Afghanistan. The attack came after the closing of a Pakistani border crossing in the northwest, following an earlier NATO airstrike in Pakistan.  The events raise concerns about mounting tensions between Washington and Pakistan, a nation the U.S. calls a key ally in the war on terror. VOA's Robert Raffaele has more.

    Flames roared from the tankers, after Pakistani officials say a group of gunmen set 27 vehicles on fire. No one was killed, but officials say a similar attack elsewhere left two people dead.  Police arrested around 10 suspects in connection to this attack in the southern city of Shikarpur.  

    A day earlier, Pakistan shut down a vital supply route for  NATO forces. Camera crews captured trucks and fuel tankers stopped by police at the Torkham border post in the Khyber tribal region. The bulk of fuel and other non-lethal supplies for NATO troops in Afghanistan moves through Pakistan.

    U.S. Special Envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke on Friday took part in a foreign policy discussion in Washington. He said closing the border for very long would have a colossal impact on Pakistan's economy. "It's inconceivable to me that the closing of the routes -- the alleged closing which is not a full closing anyway -- would continue more than a short period of time," he said.

    But there are obvious strains in the U.S.-Pakistani relationship. Pakistan closed the border after it says a NATO airstrike killed three of its soldiers, and anger over that and other incidents flared in parliament Friday.

    Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. "If you (NATO) attack inside Pakistani territory and cause any collateral damage, we will not accept it. We will never allow you to interfere with Pakistan's sovereignty and security. If you (NATO) do not justify the attacks and do not apologize, then we will consider other alternatives. We have other options too," he said.

    White House spokesman Robert Gibbs had this to say. "We will continue to work with our ally in ensuring we can do whatever is possible  to assist them in their fight against those extremists that again, not just threaten us, but threaten the existence of their own government in Pakistan," he said.

    In Karachi Friday, scores of protesters took to the streets to condemn NATO strikes in Pakistan.

    And Pakistan's ambassador to Belgium lodged a formal protest to NATO leaders.

    You May Like

    Beijing Warns Critics Over South China Sea Dispute

    Official warns critics that the more they challenge China's position regarding disputed territories in one of world’s busiest waterways, the more it will push back

    Will New Russian Force Be 'Putin’s Personal Army'?

    With broad powers to control riots, suppress dissent, National Guard may be aimed at sending a message to West as much as keeping peace at home

    Foreign Media in Pyongyang Barred From North Korean Party Congress

    Hundreds of international journalists invited to cover historic party meeting barred from entering actual event

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Image Recognition Market Seen Doubling by 2020i
    X
    Ramon Taylor
    May 05, 2016 10:05 PM
    From auto tagging on Facebook to self-driving cars, image recognition technology as it exists today is still in its beginning phases, experts say — and will soon change the way users and corporations interact with the physical world. VOA's Ramon Taylor reports.
    Video

    Video Image Recognition Market Seen Doubling by 2020

    From auto tagging on Facebook to self-driving cars, image recognition technology as it exists today is still in its beginning phases, experts say — and will soon change the way users and corporations interact with the physical world. VOA's Ramon Taylor reports.
    Video

    Video Child Labor in Afghanistan Remains a Problem

    With war still raging in Afghanistan, the country also faces the problem of child labor as families put their school-age children to work to help make ends meet. But, thanks to VOA's Afghan Service, two families whose children had been working in a brick-making factory - to earn their livings and pay off family debts - now have a new lease on life. Zabihullah Ghazi reports.
    Video

    Video Kurdish Troops Recount Firefight Which Killed US Navy SEAL

    A U.S. Navy SEAL killed Tuesday, when Islamic State fighters punched through Kurdish lines in northern Iraq, was part of a quick reaction force sent to extract other U.S. troops trapped by the surprise offensive. VOA's Kawa Omar spoke with Kurdish troops in the town of Telskuf -- the scene of what U.S. officials called a "dynamic firefight."
    Video

    Video British Lawmakers Warn EU Exit Talks Could Last A Decade

    Leaving the European Union would mean difficult negotiations that could take years to complete, according to a bipartisan group of British lawmakers. While the group did not recommend a vote either way, the lawmakers noted trade deals between the EU and non-EU states take between four and nine years on average. Henry Ridgwell reports on the mounting debate over whether Britain should stay or exit the EU as the June vote approaches.
    Video

    Video NASA Astronauts Train for Commercial Space Flights

    Since the last Shuttle flight in 2011, the United States has been relying on Russian rockets to launch fresh crews to the International Space Station. But that may change in the next few years. NASA and several private space companies are developing advanced capsules capable of taking humans into low orbit and beyond. As VOA's George Putic reports, astronauts are already training for commercial spacecraft in flight simulators.
    Video

    Video US Worried Political Chaos in Iraq Will Hurt IS Fight

    The White House is expressing concern about rising political chaos in Iraq and the impact it could have on the fight against the Islamic State. The U.S. says Iraq needs a stable, central government to help push back the group. But some say Baghdad may not have a unified government any time soon. VOA's White House correspondent Mary Alice Salinas reports.
    Video

    Video Press Freedom in Myanmar Fragile, Limited

    As Myanmar begins a new era with a democratically elected government, many issues of the past confront the new leadership. Among them is press freedom in a country where journalists have been routinely harassed or jailed.
    Video

    Video Taliban Threats Force Messi Fan to Leave Afghanistan

    A young Afghan boy, who recently received autographed shirts and a football from his soccer hero Lionel Messi, has fled his country due to safety concerns. He and his family are now taking refuge in neighboring Pakistan. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from Islamabad.
    Video

    Video Major Rubbish Burning Experiment Captures Destructive Greenhouse Gases

    The world’s first test to capture environmentally harmful carbon dioxide gases from the fumes of burning rubbish took place recently in Oslo, Norway. The successful experiment at the city's main incinerator plant, showcased a method for capturing most of the carbon dioxide. VOA’s Deborah Block has more.
    Video

    Video EU Visa Block Threatens To Derail EU-Turkey Migrant Deal

    Turkish citizens could soon benefit from visa-free travel to Europe as part of the recent deal between the EU and Ankara to stem the flow of refugees. In return, Turkey has pledged to keep the migrants on Turkish soil and crack down on those who are smuggling them. Brussels is set to publish its latest progress report Wednesday — but as Henry Ridgwell reports from London, many EU lawmakers are threatening to veto the deal over human rights concerns.
    Video

    Video Tensions Rising Ahead of South China Sea Ruling

    As the Philippines awaits an international arbitration ruling on a challenge to China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea, it is already becoming clear that regardless of which way the decision goes, the dispute is intensifying. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Painting Captures President Lincoln Assassination Aftermath

    A newly restored painting captures the moments following President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865. It was recently unveiled at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, where America’s 16th president was shot. It is the only known painting by an eyewitness that captures the horror of that fateful night. VOA’s Julie Taboh tells us more about the painting and what it took to restore it to its original condition.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora