Washington: In a move that could further
strain the US-Pak ties, the Obama administration is suspending
and, in some cases, cancelling millions of dollars of aid to
the Pakistani military to chasten it for expelling American
military trainers, a media report said on Sunday.
"About USD 800 million in military aid and equipment,
or over one-third of the more than USD 2 billion in annual
American security assistance to Pakistan, could be affected,"
the New York Times reported.
This aid includes about USD 300 million to reimburse
Pakistan for some of the costs of deploying more than 100,000
soldiers along the Afghan border to combat terrorism, as well
as hundreds of millions of dollars in training assistance and
military hardware, the paper said quoting half a dozen
Congressional, Pentagon and other administration officials.
The move illustrates the depth of the debate inside
the Obama administration over how to change the behaviour of
one of its key counter-terrorism partners, the NYT said.
The news of halting or withdrawal of aid comes days
after US military chief Admiral Mike Mullen`s remarks linking
Pakistan government to the murder of a journalist.
Some of the curtailed aid is equipment that the US
wants to send but Pakistan now refuses to accept, like rifles,
ammunition, body armour and bomb-disposal gear that were
withdrawn or held up after Pakistan ordered more than 100 Army
Special Forces trainers to leave the country in recent weeks.
Some is equipment, such as radios, night-vision
goggles and helicopter spare parts, which cannot be set up,
certified or used for training because Pakistan has denied
visas to the American personnel needed to operate the
equipment, two senior Pentagon officials said, the paper