US Offers $2bn Security Aid To Pakistan: Hillary
US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has termed the Pak-US strategic dialogue as constructive and positive. She was talking at a joint press conference between the foreign ministers of both the countries after the commencement of the third round of strategic dialogue between Pakistan and the United States. Ms. Clinton also termed Pakistan the closest ally in the war against terrorism. Speaking on the occasion Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said that Pak-US relations need to be brought to public level.
Earlier Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton announced on Friday that the Obama administration would seek $2 billion in foreign military assistance for Pakistan, saying Washington had no closer ally in the struggle against insurgents than Pakistan.
Announcement of the military assistance, which would be delivered over five years from 2012 to 2016, came at the formal opening session of the third round of the U.S.-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue, a series of bilateral meetings that began on Wednesday. Clinton said President Barack Obama’s administration would ask the U.S. Congress to approved the military assistance to complement the $7.5 billion in civilian projects it already has approved.
She said that Pakistan is facing a number challenges but America will help the country in these difficult times. She said that floods put negative impact on the economy of Pakistan and affected 2 million people.
In a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Hillary said that with the cooperation of international community and Pakistan government, steps are being taken to help the flood-hit people. She said that Pakistan is the key ally in the war against terrorism.
On the occasion, Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said it was time to counter naysayers who argue that Islamabad’s heart is not in the fight against the insurgents. “Prophets of doom are back in business, painting doomsday scenarios about our alliance,” he said. “They are dead wrong.”
Qureshi said that Pakistan wants long-term relations with the US. He said that President Obama wants peaceful resolution of Kashmir dispute. He said that Pakistan and US should work together to restore peace in Afghanistan.
The strategic dialogue is organized into 13 working groups, ranging from water and agriculture to communications and defense.