Washington: Pentagon on Tuesday said it will not “abandon” Pakistan as it did in the past, particularly after the Soviet Union left Afghanistan in 80s, and assured its support to the government there in its ability to bring about positive changes.
“We must manifest to the Pakistani government and the Pakistani people that we are there for the long haul, that we are not going to abandon them again, as we did years ago, when the Pressler amendment sort of froze us out of contacts with - with the Pakistani government and military,” Pentagon spokesman Jeoff Morrell said.
The Pentagon, he said, is encouraged by the fact that the Kerry-Lugar bill is a step in that direction.
“It would provide a base line of support, over five years, several billion dollars that would go to support the Pakistani government and their ability to bring about positive changes for their people.
“So that’s how we demonstrate to the people of Pakistan that we are their partners and that we are there for the long term,” he said.
Responding to a question, Morrell said officially the Pentagon has a presence in Pakistan.
“It’s a very small presence. It’s a train the trainer programme. We have got probably a couple or a few dozen personnel on the ground, so we do have a presence,” he said.