WASHINGTON: US Senators John Karry and Richard Lugar would table their long-awaited legislation to expand and overhaul US aid to Pakistan in US Congress today. The legislation, named as Karry-Lugar bill, aims at paving ways for the provision of financial assistance to Pakistan by US and improving bilateral relations between the two countries. The Kerry Lugar bill that would give a whooping US $ 7.5 billion non-military aid to Pakistan.
A statement issued from the office of Sen. Karry, who also chairs the influential Foreign Affairs Committee of US Senate, said that the constitutional bill is aimed at structuring Pak-US relationship on solid and long-lasting grounds besides providing financial aid to Pakistan.
bama has urged the Congress to facilitate an early passage of the bill. Being billed as a key to the success in Pakistan, the Kerry-Lugar bill authorises US $ 7.5 billion over the next five fiscal years in non-military aid. It advocates an additional US $ 7.5 billion over the subsequent five years. The bill, however, conditions military aid on certification by Secretary of State that Pakistani security forces are making concerted efforts to prevent al Qaeda and oher terrorist groups from operating in the territory of Pakistan.
Meanwhile President Asif Ali Zardari is arriving Washington on his first official visit to the United States where he is due to attend a trilateral summit. In his visit to America, President Zardari is scheduled to meet with U.S. President Barack H. Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Foreign Secretary Hillary Clinton, Deference Minister Robert Gates and other high-level officials. Besides, he will also address the Pakistani community living in America.
President Zardari, US President Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai will meet to chalk out a joint strategy to combating terrorism along Pak-Afghan border areas and other issues. The president is also expected to meet with members of U.S. Congress, Senate and Foreign Affairs Committee.
Input from Agencies