US House panel imposes limits on Pakistan aid

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Washington, Jun 15: A key US Congressional committee has approved a defence spending bill that would impose limits on US aid to Pakistan, reflecting its frustration with Islamabad's efforts in the war against terror.

The committe approved the allocation USD 1.1 billion to Pakistan next year for its counter-insurgency operations under the bill, which also threatens to withhold three-fourth of this fund till the Obama administration reports to Congress on how it would spend the money.

The first major approval of Pakistan-related funding by the Congress after the killing of Osama bin Laden in a safe house near Islamabad,

The move reflects the changing mood of US lawmakers towards Pakistan as an increasing number of influential Congressmen are questioning the decision of the Obama Administration to give billions in aid to Pakistan as terrorist continue to operate in the country.

The Defence Appropriations Bill passed by the House Appropriations Committee by a voice vote yesterday says that the Congress will withhold 75 per cent of Pakistan Counter-insurgency Capability Funds until the Secretary of Defence provides a report to Congress on a strategy and metrics for the use of these funds, said a press statement issued by the House Appropriations Committee.

According to the Appropriations Bill, the Secretary of Defence also needs to provide to the Congress a listing of the terrorist or extremist organisations in Pakistan opposing US goals in the region and against which America encourages Pakistan to take action.

PTI

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