Thursday, July 21, 2011
Congress Panel Of US Rejects Proposal To Cut Off All The Aid To Pakistan
A US Congress panel on Thursday rejected a proposal to cut off all aid to Pakistan due to concerns over the country's relationship with militants after the raid that killed Osama bin Laden.
The House Foreign Affairs Committee easily rejected the measure, with five lawmakers voting yes and 39 voting no. But the bill in its current form would still impose tighter controls over aid, making it contingent on measurable progress by Pakistan.
Representative Dana Rohrabacher, a Republican from California, had offered the amendment to a spending bill for the year starting in October that would have barred any US funds to provide assistance to Pakistan.
Rohrabacher raised questions about how Pakistan was using assistance from the United States at a time that Washington is seeking to curb spending to tame a ballooning debt.
President Barack Obama's administration recently suspended about one-third of its $2.7 billion annual defense aid to Pakistan. But it has assured Islamabad it is committed to a five-year, $7.5 billion civilian package approved in 2009 that aims to build schools, infrastructure and democratic institutions.