Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

1. The thin strip of tarmac winds its way through small villages and across desert and mountain passes

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

2. It is the most dangerous road in Afghanistan

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

3. It is pock marked with IED craters, littered with burnt out tankers and trucks

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

4. In order to avoid being hit by either IED’s or caught in an ambush the NDS (National Directorate of Security) Special Forces soldiers drive at high speed in heavily armed pick up trucks

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

5. They are constantly on the look out for attackers as they weave between the lines of trucks as well as normal cars and even families

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

6. Scorched patches of asphalt show where other lorries had been incinerated

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

7. Opened to great fanfare in 2003, the road was hailed as a key element in rebuilding the economic infrastructure of the war-shattered nation

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

8. But today its once-pristine asphalt has become as scarred as the country’s hopes for peace – a bomb-cratered, 300-mile long shooting

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One



9. No proper figures for casualties are available, but the best estimate from police officials is that several dozen people have been killed

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One

10. The route is busiest on convoy day when fuel trucks and supply vehicle transit the route, often protected by armed security contractors

Afghanistan: Riding Highway One