US constantly evaluating effectiveness of aid to Pak

US forces, with Pakistan`s help, are fighting war against Taliban and Qaeda.

Updated: Jul 22, 2010, 12:40 PM IST

Washington: The US is constantly evaluating the effectiveness of its aid given to Pakistan for fighting terrorism, a top American official has said.

"We are continually evaluating how to make those as effective as possible, how to channel them so that as much as this assistance as possible gets to the intended beneficiaries," State Department spokesman PJ Crowley told reporters at his daily news briefing.

Crowley was responding to a question on the letter written by the New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez, urging Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to submit a report to the Congress on aid effectiveness and Islamabad`s efforts to cease support for terrorist groups. Pakistan has received more than USD 13 billion worth of US aid post 9/11 terrorist attacks.

"We are reporting on a regular basis to the Congress given not only the large sum of money that we are seeking in support of this programme under the Kerry-Lugar-Berman legislation," the spokesman said.

Menendez had said that analysis from independent observers like RAND and new threats from those like Pakistani-American Faisal Shahzad, plotter of failed Times Square bombing, reaffirm the necessity to define, revisit and if necessary reassess the US strategy for Pakistan.

Dated July 02, the letter was released to the press on Monday as Hillary, who was in Islamabad then, announced a series of aid to Pakistan.

The senator said that with much of al Qaeda`s leadership believed to be residing in the tribal areas along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, it has received more than USD 13 billion of US taxpayers` money, since the 9/11 attacks.

USD 7.2 billion of which has been reimbursements to Pakistan`s military, he added.

US forces, with Pakistan`s help, are fighting war against Taliban and al Qaeda there to flush out terrorism from the region since 2001.

Menendez said he has been an advocate for a smart and comprehensive strategy-one with quantifiable metrics and regular monitoring to ensure not only accountability, but to provide a framework for constant improvement.

"There is no doubt that we are dealing with complicated issues in a volatile region; the threat of terrorism originating from Pakistan is no less complex and challenging.”

"It calls for a plan utilising all elements of US national power, which is why I urge the prompt completion of the comprehensive strategy and monitoring reports on security and foreign assistance in the region," he said in the letter.