Congress rigidifies stand on USA aid to Pakistan

Remigio Civitarese
Luglio 17, 2017

A U.S. Congressional panel started on 14 July hearing a proposal to make civil and military aid to Pakistan conditional to its support to the fight against the Afghan Taliban.

The US House of Representatives has voted for three legislative amendments to impose tougher conditions for reimbursement of defence funding to Pakistan making it conditional to Islamabad showing satisfactory progress in the fight against terrorism.

The amendment was passed by US House of Representatives.

Through a separate resolution, they are seeking to remove Pakistan from the list of major non-Nato allies, a designation that confers a variety of military and financial advantages that otherwise are not obtainable to non-Nato countries.

The meeting would be taking place in the backdrop of the fact that after the passage of the National Defence Authorization Act for 2017 by the US Congress, it has become hard for Pakistan to get the US funding in the name of fight against terror.

It was adopted by a voice vote.

These amendments were moved by pro-Indian Congressmen Dana Rohrabacher and Ted Poe.

US Congress on Friday in a landmark judgement passed National Defence Authorization Act for 2017 as per which now the US Secretary of Defence will have to ensure that Pakistan is not providing any military, financial, or logistical support to anyone designated as a terrorist group operating in Pakistan or Afghanistan. Till now, the current barring on military reimbursement to Pakistan was limited to only one terrorist group - the Haqqani Network, ANI reported.

Amendments moved by other lawmakers, although related to Afghanistan, may also impact Pakistan.

Poe in a statement said, "It is well known that Pakistan is a Benedict Arnold ally who supports multiple terrorist organisations, including groups that target Americans working to stabilise Afghanistan".

On the Afghanistan front; Trump, Defence Secretary James Mattis and other security officials would also discussing the possibility of sending more troops to Afghanistan, strategies to eliminate the ISIS.

Benedict Arnold was a general during the American revolutionary war, who originally fought for the American continental army, but defected to the British army.

Today Congress took a step forward to end Pakistan's betrayal of the USA with the addition of an additional certification requirement, said Poe, a Member of the Foreign Affairs Committee and chairman of subcommittee on terrorism non-proliferation & trade.

If the bill becomes law, which would require the approval of both US Congress's upper house (the Senate) and President Donald Trump, it would require the Pentagon to asses Pakistan's support for "known terrorists" before US provides military funding to Islamabad.

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