Kazakhs ratifies US air transit deal

Kazakhstan has ratified an agreement with the United States to allow the air transit of supplies and personnel destined for operations in Afghanistan.

A statement posted on the Kazakh president's website Tuesday says the agreement will guarantee the security, stability and reconstruction of Afghanistan.

It formalizes a previous loose arrangement. Kazakhstan's Foreign Ministry says around 10,000 flights carrying troops and supplies have crossed the Central Asian nation's airspace since 2001.

Worsening security in Pakistan's border areas has forced the U.S.-led military coalition in Afghanistan to grow increasingly reliant on northern land and air supply routes, which also cross Russia and Uzbekistan.