CORRECTION: The original version of this report gave an incorrect figure for the amount of U.S. assistance to Pakistan since 9/11. It is $20 billion.
Tensions between the U.S. and Pakistan, already high because of the secret operation to take out Osama bin Laden, will likely worsen in the face of a public revelation that the U.S. has been denying more than 40 percent of claims made by Pakistan for compensation of military equipment and other supplies used in the American war on terrorism.
According to The Wall Street Journal, which reviewed expense claims in internal Pentagon documents, rejection rates have risen from 1.5 percent in 2005 to 44 percent in 2009 -- amounts in the range of a billion dollars. Although U.S. officials declined to comment on the claims, they did say that Pakistan generally failed to prove recently that the money was necessary or was used to support military operations to fight terrorism.
For its part, Pakistani officials told The Journal that the change is just a sign that American officials don’t trust their Pakistani counterparts.
The claims are paid by the Coalition Support Fund, which President George W. Bush set up soon after 9/11 to get Pakistani help in its war against the Taliban in Afghanistan. Since that time, the U.S. has provided $20 billion in assistance to Pakistan; the amount includes $8.87 billion in reimbursements that are paid directly to the Pakistani treasury.
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