Washington, July 11 : Top U. S. Senators have said Pakistan should get 1.1 billion dollars in U. S. funds that have been held up for months, now that Islamabad has reopened crucial NATO supply lines to Afghanistan.
Congress has already approved the money to reimburse Pakistan for counterterrorism operations, but it has been on hold for some six months, reports The Dawn.
A major obstacle to releasing the money was removed last week when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton apologised to Pakistan for the killing of 24 Pakistani troops last November and Pakistan, in return, agreed to reopen the NATO supply routes to Afghanistan.
Armed Services Committee chairman Carl Levin, Democrat D-Michigan and top Republican Lindsey Graham, said the money should be released, albeit reluctantly.
"They don''t deserve it. What they''ve done is presumably earned it by the amount of money they''ve laid out in terms of their anti-terrorist activity and protecting our lines," Levin said.
"If our commanders believe that releasing the funds helps the war effort, yes. I don''t want to second-guess these people. Pakistan on a good day is very hard. It is an unreliable ally. You can''t trust them, you can''t abandon them. And I want Pakistan to be stable. And if the money helps them become more stable, good," Graham said.
The Pentagon intends to submit 1.1 billion dollars in approved requests for reimbursement of money the Pakistan government has spent on counterterrorism operations that were incurred largely along the border. (ANI)