No new funds before audit of previous disbursements: Kerry to Zardari

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Islamabad, Feb.17 (ANI): The United States has made it clear to Pakistan that it would not release funds under the Coalition Support Fund (CSF) for 2010 unless there is an audit of the disbursement made during 2009.

During a meeting with President Asif Ali Zardari here, visiting top US Senator John Kerry said the Obama administration would not disburse more money before the audit is done.

According to sources privy to the meeting, Zardari, during the meeting, urged Kerry to use his influence for the timely release of 1.5 billion dollars promised by Washington to Islamabad under the CSF.

However, the top US Senator referred to the US law that required audit by the American auditors of the previous disbursements before the release of subsequent funds.

During the meeting, Zardari also stressed on the need for channelling the US financial assistance under the Kerry Lugar bill through the government channels but Kerry reminded him that channels for the US economic assistance were very much prescribed in the relevant legislation and it was not possible to change them with an amendment.

Kerry was accompanied with the US Ambassador to Pakistan Anne Patterson, while Defence Minister Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar, Interior Minister Rehman Malik and Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir were also present during the meeting, The Nation reports. (ANI)

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