U.S. Senate Passes Defense Bill That Targets Pakistan Aid, Iran
December 16, 2011
The United States Senate has passed a $662 billion defense bill, which includes measures that would suspend some U.S. aid to Pakistan and imposes sanctions targeting Iran's central bank.
The Senate on December 15 voted 86-13 for the National Defense Authorization Act.
The legislation, which was passed on December 14 by the House Of Representatives, now goes to President Barack Obama, who is expected to sign it into law.
Part of the legislation increases U.S. pressure on Iran over Tehran's nuclear program, threatening U.S. sanctions against foreign financial institutions that do business with Iran's central bank.
The bill enables the U.S. president to waive those penalties if he notifies Congress that it's in the interest of U.S. national security to do so.
The measure also suspends $700 million in aid to Pakistan until the U.S. Defense Secretary provides Congress with a report on how Pakistani authorities are countering the threat of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) to U.S. forces in neighboring Afghanistan.
The measure also approves the U.S. military being able to detain terrorist suspects indefinitely.
compiled from agency reports
Copyright (c) 2011. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
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