August 11, 2018
Washington: US military institutions are struggling to fill the 66 slots they had kept aside for officers from Pakistan for the next academic year, as President Donald Trump’s administration refused to provide funds for their training, official sources said.
The fund for training Pakistani officers came from the US government’s International Military Education and Training Programme (IMET) but no funds were made available for Pakistan for the next academic year, Dawn online reported on Saturday quoting the sources as saying.
Dawn first learned about the suspension from the US National Defence University (NDU), Washington, which has had reserved seats for Pakistani officers for more than a decade now.
The outgoing Pakistani officers, however, were told that the university has been asked to fill the positions for the next year with officers from other nations.
The NDU is one of several US military institutions that train officers from Pakistan.
The Trump administration announced early this year that it was suspending security assistance to Pakistan over differences on Afghanistan but indicated that training programmes for military officers will continue.
The cancellation of slots kept aside for Pakistani officers, however, shows that the suspension now also applies to training programmes.
Pakistani officers have been receiving military training and education in the US since early 1960s, which were suspended in the 1990s but restored after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.