Khunjerab Pass

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Khunjerab Pass (elevation 4,693 metres (15,397 ft) is a high mountain pass in the Karakorum Mountains on the northern border of Gilgit-Baltistan and the Xinjiang Autonmous Region of China. The name is derived from Wakhi for Blood Valley.[citation needed]


Sino-Pakistani Border Crossing

The Khunjerab Pass is the highest paved border crossing in the world and the highest point on the Karakoram Highway. The roadway across the pass was completed in 1982, and has superseded the unpaved Mintaka Pass and Kilik Pass as the primary passage across the Karakorum Range.

On the Pakistani side, the pass is 125 km (78 mi) from Sust, 270 km (170 mi) from Gilgit and 870 km (540 mi) from Islamabad. There is a security outpost in Dih, and a customs and immigration post near Sust. On the Chinese side, the pass is 130 km (81 mi) from Tashkurgan, 420 km (260 mi) from Kashgar and some 1,890 km (1,170 mi) from Urumqi. The Chinese port of entry is located 1 km (0.62 mi) away from the mountain in Tashkurgan County.

The long, flat pass is often snow-covered during the winter season and as a consequence, it is closed from November 30 to May 1. There is excellent grazing on the Chinese side of the pass, and domesticated yaks and dzu (a cross between yaks and cows) may be seen from the road. On the Pakistani side, the highway travels about 50 km (31 mi) across the extensive Khunjerab National Park before reaching the security outpost of Dih.

Since June 1, 2006, there has been a daily bus service across the boundary from Gilgit, to Kashghar, China[1]

Strategic Position

Khunjerab Pass is in a strategic position between the autonomous region of Gilgit-Baltistan (formerly known as the Northern Areas), part of the disputed region of Kashmir and the Xinjiang autonomous region of China.

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