NATO will use a Russian air base in the city of Ulyanovsk to transport supplies to troops in Afghanistan.
When the preparations are finished, the base will be used “continuously” to supply troops, Russia’s acting NATO envoy Nikolai Korchunov said, according to state-owned RIA Novosti, citing a local media report.
There will be no “foreign military personnel” at the base, Korchunov added. “No explosive or dangerous cargo will be transported,” he said.
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen spoke to RIA Novosti of the deal in March, saying that the bloc has “no intention of establishing a base in Russia.”
“This is a pragmatic arrangement which allows us to transport non-lethal weapons and troops to benefit our operation in Afghanistan,” he was quoted as saying then.
Ulyanovsk Customs Chief Valery Gerasev told the Vestnik Kavkaza publication that transit costs for the containers shipped through the base would be between $5,000 and $6,000 each. A transit facility in the city would also provide jobs.
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