US Congressional committee clears Pak aid bill

Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by I-G, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. I-G

    I-G Tihar Jail Banned

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    US Congressional committee clears Pak aid bill

    Press Trust of India, Wednesday June 17, 2009, Washington


    A bill to provide aid to Pakistan was passed by a key Congressional committee which stopped short of imposing strict accountability conditions on Islamabad, leaving it with the Obama Administration to take decision on this as and when required.

    US Senate Foreign Relation Committee passed the bill, which triples non-military assistance to Pakistan to $1.5 billion per annum for the next five years, but not before adding a series of amendments to the original text reflecting the strong sense of the Senators that the security assistance to Pakistan only be focused on defeating the Taliban insurgency and denying safe haven to Al-Qaida and make sure that the aid provided should not be misused.

    However it stopped short of imposing conditions on Pakistan in this regard and linking it with the aid, leaving it with the Obama Administration to take a call on this as and when required.

    Though it does not impose a strong condition on Pakistan in this regard, the amendment accepted by the Senate Committee during the Markup Hearing of the Kerry-Lugar Bill, said "US security assistance earmarked for Pakistan should be focused on counterinsurgency capabilities to defeat the Taliban insurgency and deny sanctuary to Al-Qaida and other extremists."

    The amendment in this regard was moved by Senator Tom Casey, who earlier had been very critical of the US aid to Pakistan in the past. In fact, he moved three amendments, all of which were accepted by the Committee.

    Senator Casey's counterinsurgency amendment declares that the primary objective of security-related assistance to Pakistan should be to defeat the Taliban-backed insurgency.

    But unlike the House version of the Bill, it does not impose conditions on Pakistan in this regard.

    His amendments also specify the need to facilitate political and legal reforms in Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan as one of the "uses of funds" spelled out in the legislation.

    The Committee during its Markup hearing also accepted three amendments from Senator Robert Menendez, another Democratic Senator, who had been very critical of the US aid to Pakistan and had entered into a verbal duel with Richard Holbrooke, the Special US envoy for Pakistan and Afghanistan, who briefed the Committee last month.

    One of his three amendments accepted by the Committee directs the President to develop criteria and benchmarks for Pakistan strategy, and consult with appropriate Congressional committees on Pakistan strategy (including criteria and benchmarks) 15 days before obligating any assistance.

    The amendment in this regard was moved by Senator Tom Casey, who earlier had been very critical of the US aid to Pakistan in the past. In fact, he moved three amendments, all of which were accepted by the Committee.

    Senator Casey's counterinsurgency amendment declares that the primary objective of security-related assistance to Pakistan should be to defeat the Taliban-backed insurgency. But unlike the House version of the Bill, it does not impose conditions on Pakistan in this regard.

    His amendments also specify the need to facilitate political and legal reforms in Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan as one of the "uses of funds" spelled out in the legislation.

    The Committee during its Markup hearing also accepted three amendments from Senator Robert Menendez, another Democratic Senator, who had been very critical of the US aid to Pakistan and had entered into a verbal duel with Richard Holbrooke, the Special US envoy for Pakistan and Afghanistan, who briefed the Committee last month.

    One of his three amendments accepted by the Committee directs the President to develop criteria and benchmarks for Pakistan strategy, and consult with appropriate Congressional committees on Pakistan strategy (including criteria and benchmarks) 15 days before obligating any assistance

    US Congressional committee clears Pak aid bill
     
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  3. F-14

    F-14 Global Defence Moderator Senior Member

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    now every knows where it will go
     
  4. I-G

    I-G Tihar Jail Banned

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    EU announces new aid for Pakistan

    Brussels (AP): European Union officials told Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari on Wednesday that they will give USD 100 million in new humanitarian aid to his government to help efforts to tackle the economic crisis and terrorism.

    The aid was announced at the start of summit talks that European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said were meant to strengthen bilateral ties between the EU and Pakistan.

    They signal the EU's increasing concerns over instability in Pakistan and the effect it could have on international efforts to rid Afghanistan of Taliban.

    "I welcome President Zardari's commitment to reinforce the democratic institutions, reform the economy and defeat extremism and terrorism, which pose a threat not just to his country, but to its neighbors and to the rest of the world," Barroso said.

    The aid is meant to help some two million displaced people who have fled fighting in recent months in Pakistan's North West Frontier Province.

    This is on top of the euro485 million the European Commission has already pledged in long-term development aid to Pakistan over the next five years.

    Pakistan's Commerce Minister Makhdoom Amin Fahim said his country was looking to get more access to the EU market as a way to stabilize his country's economy.

    The Hindu News Update Service
     
  5. I-G

    I-G Tihar Jail Banned

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    Pitt, Jolie donate $1 million to help displaced people in Pakistan
    18 Jun 2009, 1200 hrs IST, IANS


    LONDON: Hollywood couple Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have donated $1 million to help displaced people in Pakistan, a country the actress has visited thrice.

    A few days ago, the couple had donated a similar amount for the creation of the Jane Pitt Paediatric Cancer Centre, named after Pitt's mother, in his hometown of Springfield, Missouri.

    Now in support of Jolie's eight-year relationship with the UN refugee agency UNHCR, the couple decided to take this step, reported people.com.

    The head of the agency, António Guterres, thanked the foundation for its assistance, calling Pakistan's plight "the most challenging humanitarian crisis of the past decade," as more than 2 million people are currently displaced in the country.

    Jolie will talk about her work in aiding refugees on Thursday when she and secretary of state Hillary Clinton celebrate World Refugee Day in Washington DC.

    Pitt, Jolie donate $1 million to help displaced people in Pakistan - UK - World - The Times of India


    Does anyone knows how much aid pakistan got till now ? War against the so called Islamic terrorists is in real pouring in billions in Pakistan .
     

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