Tuesday, April 03, 2007

US to give Pakistan 750 mln dlrs for tribal areas

The American plan to give a substantial sum for the development of the tribal areas indicates that the Americans recognize Pakistan's problem and want to help. They seem to recognize that in fact Pakistan does not really control affairs in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and are offering some material support for Pakistan in dealing with the situation in the tribal areas. However, we might expect some of the tribal groups to oppose the developments that Pakistan wants to introduce. The result will be, of course, that the tribal areas will no longer be able to remain apart from the rest of the country -- or indeed of the wider world -- and inevitably there will be questions about allowing the government to develop the areas. Worth tracking. If indeed the region is developed it will lose much of its autonomy.

by Danny Kemp

"The United States is to give Pakistan 750 million dollars over five years to develop its troubled tribal areas bordering Afghanistan..."
"Washington and other Western allies have expressed concern about the regrouping of Taliban and Al-Qaeda militants in Pakistan's impoverished tribal belt..."
"The Pentagon was also asking the US Congress for 75 million dollars to upgrade the Frontier Corps, Pakistan's paramilitary border force that has borne the brunt of the fight against militants..."
"Pakistan launched military operations in 2003 to clear the tribal areas of hundreds of Al-Qaeda and Taliban militants who fled Afghanistan after the fall of the ultra-Islamic Taliban regime in late 2001.But after the deaths of hundreds of soldiers and around 1,000 militant sit signed peace deals with tribal elders and insurgents in Waziristan.US officials in Afghanistan say attacks on foreign forces have since increased."

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