Obama admin urges Congress to resume security aid to Pakistan
Washington: The Obama Administration has requested the Congress to resume security assistance to Pakistan, which now stands at 305 million US dollars for fiscal year 2014, a drop of 35 per cent against 2012 fiscal.
The drop is because the Administration has not asked for a renewal of temporary Pakistan Counterinsurgency Capability Fund (PCCF), which was started in 2009, a senior administration official told a news agency.
The official emphasised that the civilian assistance was never interrupted, while the security assistance was significantly slowed, if not stopped during the period of strained relationship in the last two years.
There has also been a drop of 14 per cent in the civilian assistance to Pakistan for this year as requested by the Obama Administration, which is mainly attributed to the budgetary and implementation constraints of the US, he said.
"The FY 2014 foreign assistance request for Pakistan totals USD 1.162 billion, including USD 857 million of civilian assistance and USD305 million of security assistance," State Department Deputy Spokesperson, Marie Harf told a news agency.
"As part of our annual funding process, throughout the course of this past summer, the State Department notified Congress of how it planned to programme funds from several different accounts for various programmes in Pakistan.
"Funding was notified to Congress following a rigorous planning process over multiple months, to ensure that it was in line with both US and Pakistani interests, and would deliver important results for both countries.
"The US civilian assistance to Pakistan has delivered real results on issues most important to PM Sharif and all Pakistanis, like energy, education, and economic growth, she said.
"While this is part of a long process of restarting security assistance cooperation after implementation was slowed during the bilateral challenges of 2011 and 2012, civilian assistance has continued uninterrupted throughout," Harf emphasised.
She said that US security assistance continues to build the counterinsurgency and counterterrorism capabilities of Pakistan`s security forces, which she termed critical to countering violence in the western border regions.
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