India welcomes suspension of U.S. aid to Pakistan

New Delhi: India on Monday welcomed the United States’ decision to suspend $ 800 million military aid to Pakistan, saying a heavy presence of arms would have disturbed the equilibrium in the region.

“With reference to the special circumstances between India and Pakistan and how India has consistently taken the view that it is not desirable that this region had to be heavily armed by the U.S. which will upset the equilibrium in the region itself. To that extent India welcomes this step,” External Affairs Minister S M Krishna told reporters here.

Mr. Krishna was reacting to the US’ decision to cut military aid to Pakistan.

The suspended aid, which is about one-third of the $ 2 billion in annual American security assistance to Pakistan, includes about $ 300 million to reimburse Pakistan for some of the costs of deploying more than 100,000 soldiers along the Afghan border to combat terrorism.

It also comprises millions of dollars in training assistance and military hardware.

Mr. Krishna said, “Simultaneously the U.S. must take note of the fact that we are working in a very committed manner to normalise our relations with Pakistan to reduce trust deficit, and efforts are on.”

The Minister said he was expecting his Pakistani counterpart to visit the country around the end of this month to carry forward the dialogue process.

He also condemned the suicide attacks in Islamabad on Monday.

“If this is an attack by terrorists or terror-oriented organisations, then India condemns all such attempts. India condemns terror attacks across the globe,” he said.

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