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Militants destroy nine NATO vehicles in Pakistan: officials

Suspected Taliban militants in Pakistan destroyed nine parked NATO force vehicles after attacking a terminal, officials said.

world Updated: Apr 03, 2009 13:20 IST

Suspected Taliban militants in Pakistan destroyed nine parked NATO force vehicles after attacking a terminal, officials said on Friday.

Rebels targeted the Port World Logistic terminal on the outskirts of the northwestern city of Peshawar with petrol bombs and rockets, the latest in a series of strikes against supplies for foreign forces across the border.

"There were no casualties in the attack early Friday, but the fire destroyed nine NATO vehicles, including firefighting vans and four-by-four jeeps," local police official Fazal Wahid Khan told AFP.

He said militants traded fire with police until the attack was repulsed and rebels fled into the darkness.

Another police official Anwar Khan confirmed the assault and said nine vehicles had been destroyed, but added the number of militants was not known.

"We are also in the process of assessing the damage (from) the fire that broke out after militants threw hand grenades and fired rockets on the terminal," he said.

The bulk of supplies and equipment required by NATO and US-led forces battling a Taliban insurgency in Afghanistan are shipped through Pakistan. The fabled Khyber pass through the northwest is the principal land route.

US officials say northwest Pakistan has degenerated into a safe haven for Al-Qaeda and Taliban militants who fled the 2001 US-led invasion of Afghanistan and have regrouped to launch attacks on foreign troops across the border.

Extremists opposed to the Pakistani government's decision to side with the United States in its "war on terror" have carried out a series of bombings and other attacks that have killed nearly 1,700 people in less than two years.