US panel seeks to withhold 75 per cent aid to Pakistan

Washington, June 15(ANI): The US House Appropriations Committee has approved a defence spending bill that imposes limits on American aid to Pakistan, reflecting its frustration with Islamabad's efforts in the war on terror.

The legislation would provide 530 billion dollars for the US Defence Department as the bill is 9 billion dollars less than what President Barack Obama had requested, The Nation reports.

The bill would withhold 75 per cent of the 1.1-billion-dollar US aid to Pakistan until the administration reports to Congress on how it would spend the money, it reported.

The House Appropriations Committee also adopted an amendment that gives Congress even more power to review the spending, it added.

After giving the go-ahead to the bill on a voice vote on Tuesday, the panel forwarded the bill to the full House for consideration, expected later this month.

The Senate is still working on its version of the bill. The two houses must pass the same bill before sending it to the President for his signature.

The lawmakers also urged Obama to step up the pace of US troop drawdown in Afghanistan.

Expressing growing scepticism about the nearly 10-year-old war in Afghanistan, the House panel approved only 649 billion dollars in defence spending for the 2012 fiscal year, including 118 billion dollars for the wars abroad.

Copyright Asian News International/