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India for monitoring mechanism to stop misuse of US aid to Pak

Last Updated: Friday, July 23, 2010 - 20:54

New Delhi: Voicing concern over the misuse
of US military aid by Pakistan, India on Friday asked America to
set up a "monitoring mechanism" as a remedial measure, but got
no clear assurance in this regard.

Defence Minister A K Antony, while receiving US Joint
Chiefs of Staff Committee Chairman Admiral Mike Mullen here,
told him about India`s worries that Pakistan was diverting the
American military assistance to building capacities against
Antony said arms aid to Pakistan, worth billions of
dollars annually, was "disproportionate to the war on terror"
for which it was intended and the US should ensure it was used
only for the purpose meant for.

During the 45-minute meeting, the Defence Minister
suggested that the US should set up a monitoring mechanism to
ensure that there was no diversion of the aid which Pakistan
receives, Defence Ministry sources said.

Later, when asked about India`s concerns, Mullen told
reporters that the military aid to Pakistan did not in any way
"greatly imbalance" its capabilities vis-a-vis India.

Asked whether the US would take a re-look at the
assistance if India provided evidence of misuse by Pakistan,
he termed it as a "hypothetical" question but said if there
was a change in use of the weapon systems, the US would look
at it.

"As far as the systems that we are selling them and
providing them, they are systems that very specifically are to
be used and have been used against the terrorists threat
within their own country," he said.

Mullen, who also met Chairman Chiefs of Staff Committee
Air Chief Marshal P V Naik, said the issue of diversion of
US military aid by Pakistan was raised by the Indian political
and military leadership during his meetings with them.
He said the US encourages India to "keep it on the

However, the American Admiral said the US weapon sales
to and cooperation with Pakistan was "reflective" of growing
relations and friendship between the two countries.

"We are broadening the relationship with Pakistan and it
is relationship that was cut off for almost a dozen years. We
are trying to re-establish the trust with Pakistan which was
virtually eliminated when we stopped the relationship in 1990.
Certainly, we have expressed very strong desire on where these
weapon systems should be used and the resources as well," he

His comments assume significance as these come close on
the heels of the statement by US Special Envoy on Afghanistan
and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke that American efforts to
improve relations with Pakistan was not bad for India.

Holbrooke said here yesterday that it was in the
interest of India if relations between the US and Pakistan
became better.


First Published: Friday, July 23, 2010 - 20:54
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