Two powerful American lawmakers have introduced a bill in the US House of Representatives to designate Pakistan a state sponsor of terrorism. The lawmakers said it was time the US stopped paying the country for its “betrayal”.
The ‘Pakistan State Sponsor of Terrorism Designation Act (HR 6069) has been moved by Republican Ted Poe and Democrat Dana Rohrabacher, who is a ranking member of the influential Congressional Committee on Terrorism.
“It is time we stopped paying Pakistan for its betrayal and designate it for what it is: a state sponsor of terrorism,” said Poe, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Terrorism.
“Not only is Pakistan an untrustworthy ally, Islamabad has also aided and abetted enemies of the US for years…From harbouring Osama bin Laden to its cozy relationship with the Haqqani network, there is more than enough evidence to determine whose side Pakistan is on in the War on Terror. And it’s not America’s,” Poe added.
Poe also said the bill will require the Obama administration to formally answer the question whether Pakistan is a state sponsor of terrorism or not.
The president must issue a report within 90 days of passage of bill detailing whether or not Pakistan has provided support for international terrorism, he said.
“Thirty days after that, the secretary of state (John Kerry) must issue a follow-up report containing either a determination that Pakistan is a state sponsor of terrorism or a detailed justification as to why Pakistan does not meet the legal criteria for designation,” Poe said.
Indian-Americans continued to rally behind the call for designating Pakistan a state sponsor of terrorism.
“Pakistan has been pursuing for almost 30 years the state sponsored terrorism as its strategic policy to further its sinister designs across its borders. In the process, Pakistan became a cradle and epicenter of global terrorism. At present it is totally isolated in the global community and turning into a rogue state,” said Overseas Friends of BJP in the US.
(With inputs from agencies)