WASHINGTON (Web Desk) – United States Congress Committee has interrupted financial aid worth $430 million to Pakistan putting sale of eight F-16 fighter jets on the line once again.
Department of State stated to a British journal that Obama government is in favour of supplying F-16s to Pakistan but US aid would not be used for the purpose, Dunya News reported.
Pakistan cannot afford to pay around $700 million for eight fighter jets and necessary equipment. As per the previous understanding, United States was to grant $430 million while Pakistan was to pitch in $270 million.
On the other hand United States Congress has also halted provision of $740.2 million funds for Pakistan under military aid package.
Pakistani embassy’s spokesperson in the United States, Nadeem Hotiana said that the US administration has already supported F-16s sale to Pakistan however purchase of arms and ammunition is a lengthy and time-taking procedure.
He said that India had lobbied against Pakistan regarding the sale while some members of the Congress had also criticised the deal. They had said that F-16s could be used against India, he added.
Indian External Affairs Ministry had made it clear in February that it would not buy the argument that the deal would help Pakistan combat terrorism.
“We are disappointed at the decision of the Obama Administration to notify the sale of F-16 aircrafts to Pakistan. We disagree with their rationale that such arms transfers help to combat terrorism,” Indian External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup had tweeted.
Earlier in March, the motion to supply F-16s to Pakistan garnered success in the US Senate with an overwhelming 71 to 24 margin.
The deal between the two sides was kept alive for the past five years however, Obama government announced in February to go through with the sale formally.