Millennium Post

US waives legal requirements for USD 2 billion aid to Pakistan

Notwithstanding Pakistan’s reluctance to act on its demand to rein in the dreaded Haqqani network, the US has waived the necessary legal requirements for this year’s USD 2 billion security and civilian aid to Islamabad, arguing that it was in America’s national interest.

‘Secretary (of State Hillary) Clinton has decided to exercise her authority to waive in FY 2012 certification requirements on certain civilian and security assistance to Pakistan,’ a State Department official said. Clinton has determined that such assistance ‘is in the US national security interest,’ the official added.

‘It is a critical component of US efforts to continue to build a strong, mutually beneficial relationship with Pakistan grounded in concrete action on areas of shared interest. Continuation of civilian assistance remains an important tool to further our objective of cooperating with Pakistan,’ the official said justifying the decision.

Despite recent challenges with Pakistan, the US is encouraged by recent ‘positive engagement’, including Pakistan’s participation in recent Core Group meetings with Afghanistan, the State Department official said speaking on condition on anonymity.

According to the latest report of the Congressional Research Service (CRS) in mid-August 2012, the State Department quietly notified Congress of its intention to cite US national security provisions in waiving two certification requirements that placed conditions on US assistance to Pakistan. 
Lalit K Jha

Lalit K Jha

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