Archive for Saturday, February 7, 2009

Russia allows transit of U.S. military supplies

February 7, 2009


— Russia granted transit rights Friday to non-lethal U.S. military supplies headed to Afghanistan but only after apparently pressuring a former Soviet state to close an air base leased to the Americans.

The signal from Moscow: Russia is willing to help on Afghanistan, but only on the Kremlin’s terms.

Kyrgyzstan announced the closure of the Manas air base but American officials suspect that Russia was behind the decision, having long been irritated by the U.S presence in central Asia.

The Russian decision to let U.S. supplies cross its territory opened another route to those through Pakistan now threatened by militant attacks, but U.S. officials were still left scrambling for alternatives to Manas.


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