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US aid to Pakistan spent on arming against India

According to a strategic think tank, Pakistan has used a significant portion of the US aid to arm itself for a confrontation with India instead of conducting war on terrorism.

world Updated: Nov 21, 2007 11:25 IST

Pakistan has used a significant portion of the US aid since September 11 attack to arm itself for a confrontation with India instead of conducting war on terrorism, according to a strategic think tank.

Most of the $10 billion US aid is supposed to compensate the Pakistani government for sending its 80,000 or so soldiers to the Northwest Frontier Province and providing support to the US war in Afghanistan.

However, the money has been used for procuring high-tech weaponry to arm the military for its confrontation with India, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) has said.

"We found that that the Pakistani military has been using that money and the majority of our direct military assistance for the purchase of high-tech weaponry such as the F-16 fighters," senior adviser in the CSIS Frederick (Rick) Barton said.

"It appears that the Pakistan military is continuing to arm more for its confrontation with India than it is for the war on terror because these weapons really don't have that much application for the kinds of low-grade persistent Taliban fighters and Al Qaida fighters that you find in the Northwest part of Pakistan," Barton told the National Public Radio.

Urging Washington to make a more strategic use of the money it gives Pakistan, Barton said "If we had wise approach to war on terror, we would have found ways to align ourselves more with the Pakistan people. Because the only way you can deal this kind of insurgency is to have the people on your side and to not have the people harboring the insurgents."