ISLAMABAD: Pakistan army on Monday said the cut in US aid would not affect its anti-terror efforts. Washington a day earlier confirmed that it would withhold some $800m in assistance to the country’s armed forces.
“This move would have no significant affect on Pakistan’s anti-terror efforts. We will continue our operations against militants,” Pakistan’s military spokesman Maj Gen Athar Abbas said. He said the military had received no formal notification of any aid cut but pointed out that army chief General Ashfaq Kayani had declared that cash reimbursements to the military should be redirected to the government.
He said two anti-Taliban military operations in Mohmand and Kurram tribal regions, run without any external support, would continue. “The al-Qaida and other military groups operating in Pakistan are not only a threat to us but to others (as well).
White House chief of staff Bill Daley admitted on Sunday that the relationship between the two countries was experiencing difficulties and that some of the aid flow would now be stopped.
“It’s a complicated relationship in a difficult, complicated part of the world.” The $800 million in military aid and equipment is almost one-third of the total US aid of over $2 billion. The New York Times said some of the curtailed aid is equipment that the US wants to send but Pakistan now refuses to accept.