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US vows to continue to provide assistance for Pakistan flood victims

WASHINGTON, SEP 14 (DNA) — United States said it will continue to work closely with Pakistan to assess the damage caused by recent devastating floods and provide it assistance in this time of need.

During a press briefing in Washington, the US State Department spokesperson, Ned Price said the United States is deeply saddened by the devastation and loss of life caused by the historic floods and stand with the people of Pakistan at this difficult time.

He said so far, more than half of the 630 metric tons of relief supplies from USAID’s Dubai warehouse has been delivered to Pakistan through nine flights in response to the massive floods.

To a question about US proposed 450-million dollar sale for Pakistan to refurbish its F-16 jets fleet, he said this will sustain the country capability to meet current and future counterterrorism threats.

He said the State Department recently notify Congress of the proposed foreign military sale as Pakistan is an important partner and as part of our policy, we provide lifecycle maintenance and sustainment packages for US-origin platforms.

“Pakistan is an important partner in a number of regards, an important counterterrorism partner. And as part of our longstanding policy, we provide life cycle maintenance and sustainment packages for U.S.-origin platforms,” the spokesperson remarked.

“Pakistan’s F-16 program, it’s an important part of the broader U.S.-Pakistan bilateral relationship, and this proposed sale will sustain Pakistan’s capability to meet current and future counterterrorism threats by maintaining the F-16 fleet.”

He further said that this is a fleet that allows Pakistan to support counterterrorism operations. “More than half of the 630 metric tons of relief supplies from USAID’s Dubai warehouse has been delivered to Pakistan through nine flights in response to the massive floods,” he concluded.

Meanwhile, Indian newspaper The Hindu has reported that the Biden administration has ignored the “strong objections” raised by India over the proposed foreign military sale of $450 million to Pakistan to sustain the Pakistan Air Force’s F-16 programme and notified Congress in this regard.

Last week, the US Defence Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) delivered the required certification of this possible sale, angering India who raised the matter during meetings with US official Donald Lu in New Delhi.

The publication stated that the Indian Ministry of External Affairs “protested” against the sale of spares of the jet to Pakistan despite the DSCA’s clarification that “the proposed sale does not include any new capabilities, weapons, or munitions” and it “will not alter the basic military balance in the region”.

While responding to a question in this regard, US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price said, “well, we did recently notify Congress of a proposed foreign military sale valued at $450 million for maintenance and sustainment services for the Pakistani Air Force’s F-16 programme.”

The US official stressed that Pakistan is an important partner in a number of regards and an important counterterrorism partner. “And as part of our longstanding policy, we provide life cycle maintenance and sustainment packages for US-origin platforms,” he said. =DNA






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