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Updated: August 19, 2010 08:44 IST

Pakistan not in Obama’s itinerary to Asia: White House

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The White House has said that President Obama will not add Pakistan to his itenary when he visits India and other Asian countries in November.
AP The White House has said that President Obama will not add Pakistan to his itenary when he visits India and other Asian countries in November.

There is no discussion to add Pakistan in the U.S. President Barack Obama’s itinerary when he visits India and other Asian nations in November, the White House has said.

“I haven’t heard any discussion of that,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton said when asked if there was any chance that President might add Pakistan to his trip to Asia.

Mr. Burton said the U.S. was doing everything to help flood-hit Pakistan as “this catastrophe was one that’s on a human scale and widespread.”

“We’ve given them tens of millions of dollars in aid.

U.S. helicopters and C-130s were there delivering hundreds of thousands of pounds of food and medical supplies. We are responding to all the requests that come in from the Pakistani government. We’re working with them and NGOs on the ground to ensure that we’re doing all that we can to help them out,” he said.

He said that the U.S.’ relationship with Pakistan was more than just about fighting armed extremists

“We are hoping to help them where we can. The U.S. is going to continue to do its part to help those folks that have been so terribly affected,” Mr. Burton said.

Meanwhile, State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said floods were expanding in Pakistan and in the coming days, the response (for aid) would pick up as people would understand the magnitude of this (flood).

“You have an unfolding immediate disaster but then you have also a long-term recovery that will be vitally important.

We are already reassessing the programs that we have put in place as part of our revised strategy for the region,” Mr. Crowley said.

He said that the U.S. was already reassessing the projects.

“Some of those that we have already announced would have to be recalibrated and reprioritised because the school that perhaps we hoped to rebuild is now gone. So this will be something that we’ll be dealing with for some time, but we do actually expect - and tomorrow’s event will certainly help in this regard,” he said.

Keywords: US aidBarack Obama

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