WASHINGTON, DC- In today's markup of the Kerry-Lugar "Enhanced Partnership with Pakistan Act", three amendments authored by U.S. Senator Bob Casey, Chairman of the Near East and South Asian Affairs Subcommittee, were added. The underlying legislation passed by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee would increase economic and developmental assistance to the Pakistani people in order to strengthen counterinsurgency efforts and foster good relations with the Pakistani people.
“For too long, the U.S. government paid excessive attention to Pakistan’s military generals and ignored the needs of the Pakistani people,” said Senator Casey. “The Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s successful markup of the Kerry-Lugar legislation to authorize $1.5 billion in each of the next five years for Pakistan’s economic and social development is a landmark step in reversing this unfortunate legacy. I am proud that the Committee unanimously adopted my amendments to emphasize the need for U.S. military assistance to Pakistan to prioritize counterinsurgency missions, incorporate legal and political reforms in the FATA region as an additional objective of the funding, and highlight the useful role the Pakistani-American community can play in implementation of this bill if passed.”
Senator Casey's counterinsurgency amendment declares that the primary objective of security-related assistance to Pakistan should be to defeat the Taliban-backed insurgency.
In order to help build stability in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) region, Senator Casey added language to the bill to allow funds provided by the "Enhanced Partnership with Pakistan Act" to be used for legal and political reforms in the region.
Senator Casey's amendment to encourage the Administration to tap into the expertise of Pakistani-Americans was also adopted by the committee.
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