Clinton asks US Congress to release $370 million for humanitarian projects in Pak

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Islamabad, Mar. 29 (ANI): US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has asked the Congress to release 370 million dollars for humanitarian projects in Pakistan where the military is engaged in offensive against the militants.

"The 370 million dollars we're requesting for assistance and operations in this supplemental will allow us to expand civilian cooperation at a critical moment...If not addressed immediately, could make these areas ripe for extremism," The Dawn quoted Clinton, as telling a congressional panel.

The situation in the rest of Pakistan, she warned, was also alarming as "in much of the country, water, energy and economic problems create new challenges".

"The success in the war against militants depends on rapidly and sustainable scaling up our efforts, especially on high-impact projects," she said.

"We're moving in the right direction, and the progress that we've made is possible because we have demonstrated a clear commitment to work with the people and the government of Pakistan," she added.

Senator Patrick J. Leahy asked Clinton if the Obama administration had taken precautionary measures to ensure that US assistance to Afghanistan and Pakistan was not misappropriated as both countries had "enormous corruption".

"What we are trying to do in Afghanistan and Pakistan in particular is to build in safeguards, to have certification systems in place so that we can hold entities that we contribute funds to account," Clinton said. (ANI)

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