Pakistan Postponing F-16 Purchases
Voice of America reports that Pakistan will postpone its hard-won purchase of additional F-16 fighter jets from the United States, in order to provide more relief to victims of the October earthquake which killed over 73,000 people in that country. Third-party estimates have placed the toll as high as 86,000.
President Pervez Musharraf made the announcement during a tour of quake-hit areas on November 4, 2005, which was also the Muslim holiday of Eid-ul-Fitr marking the end of Ramadan. This is a reversal of Pakistan’s earlier policy, but President Musharraf said the government wants to provide maximum relief and reconstruction efforts.