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5 NATO oil tankers torched in Pakistan

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Pakistani firefighters extinguish burning NATO supply oil tankers in southwestern Pakistan on August 19, 2011.

Militants in southwestern Pakistan have attacked yet another convoy carrying fuel to NATO forces in neighboring Afghanistan, and set the oil tankers alight.

The attackers sprayed the oil trucks with bullets, causing them to catch fire on a main highway in the Dasht area, some 20 kilometers (12 miles) south of Quetta, the capital of restive Baluchistan province, AFP reported on Saturday.

“Unknown gunmen opened fire on five oil tankers parked at the roadside on the main Quetta-Jacobabad national highway in the Dasht area late Friday after which the vehicles caught fire,” said police official, Abdul Salam, adding that there were no casualties.

The tankers were waiting for a paramilitary and police escort for their onward journey to Afghanistan via the Chaman border.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack, but in the past Taliban-linked militants carried out similar attacks to disrupt supplies to US-led troops in Afghanistan.

Most supplies and equipment required by foreign forces in Afghanistan are shipped through Pakistan, although US troops also use other routes through Central Asia.

Taliban-linked militants frequently launch attacks on NATO supply vehicles in the northwest and southwest Pakistan area bordering landlocked Afghanistan.

The militants say that the assaults are in retaliation for non-UN-sanctioned US drone strikes on Pakistan’s tribal regions.

Despite frequent attacks on NATO supply convoys, the US military has not stopped its unauthorized drone bombings on Pakistan’s territory.


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