Ministry of Foreign Affairs says is has been ‘closely coordinating’ with all sides to facilitate smooth transit of the humanitarian aid
The first batch of Afghan trucks transporting wheat donated by India through Pakistan is set to return to their homeland today (Wednesday) with their consignment, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
In a statement, the ministry recalled that the Government of Pakistan had agreed “on an exceptional basis” to allow the overland transport of humanitarian assistance of 50,000 metric tons of wheat and lifesaving medicines from India to Afghanistan via the Attari-Wagah border till the Torkham border crossing.
“Pakistan has been closely coordinating with all sides to facilitate smooth transit of the humanitarian assistance,” it said. “The first batch of 41 Afghan trucks, which entered into Pakistan through Torkham is returning to Afghanistan today after loading the Indian wheat consignment at Attari-Wagah,” it added.
Announced in January, the aid supply was delayed after Pakistani authorities refused to accept an Indian condition of using Indian trucks to transport the goods. During negotiations, however, it was agreed to allow Afghan trucks to transport the humanitarian aid to help the Afghan people avoid a looming humanitarian crisis. Earlier, sources had said that Pakistan had informed India during the talks that it was merely the aid transport due to humanitarian concerns, adding that this should not be taken as any precedent to transport other items into Afghanistan.
The World Food Program has said that the food aid would be distributed by the United Nations agency.
Trade between Pakistan and India has been suspended since 2019 when Delhi unilaterally abrogated the special constitutional status of India-held Jammu and Kashmir.