Kerry refuses to withhold aid for Pakistan

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WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State John Kerry has refused to use aid as a weapon to persuade Pakistan to release Dr Shakil Afridi. Secretary Kerry appeared before the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Wednesday afternoon to formally present the administration’s budget request for fiscal 2016. The US State Department’s budget proposal includes about $900 million for Pakistan, out of which $500 million is for countering terrorism. Congress must approve the budget before it is spent. Dana Rohrabacher, a lawmaker from California who was a strong supporter of Pakistan during the Afghan war raised the issue of Dr Afridi’s continued incarceration in Pakistan during the budget debate. He noted that the man who helped America find Osama bin Laden was still in jail in Pakistan