US delivers new F-16s to Pakistan
Pakistan has received an unspecified number of state-of-the-art F-16 fighter jets from the US "while others are being delivered," Foreign Minister Khurshid M Kasuri has said.Updated: Jun 23, 2007 03:35 IST
Pakistan has received an unspecified number of state-of-the-art F-16 fighter jets from the US "while others are being delivered," Foreign Minister Khurshid M Kasuri has said.
"Some F-16s have already been delivered while others are being delivered," Kasuri said without elaborating on the number of jets delivered by Washington.
"We have reduced the numbers because of budget constraints," Kasuri said, adding "The Americans are interested in selling as many as we want."
Islamabad wanted to buy 86 F-16s but after the October 2006 earthquake, which dealt a serious blow to the country's economy, Pakistan informed the US that was in a position to buy only 36 of them.
The foreign minister said that Pakistan had requested affiliated weapon systems with the F-16s and "those are also being delivered." However, he did not specify what sort of weapon systems Pakistan had requested.
Earlier reports had said that the US does not want to deliver the systems that can be used for carrying a nuclear warhead.
But Kasuri was quoted as saying by the Dawn daily in a report from Washington that Pakistan would not accept "any toothless weapon" and would only take "what meets our defence need."
First Published: Jun 23, 2007 02:44 IST