Why the U.S. won’t back Pakistan’s bid to host the 2024 Olympics
AUSTRALIA and BAHUBALI, Pakistan — The United States has asked the Pakistani government to stop awarding contracts to South Asian companies that have been accused of dumping their waste on the Arabian Sea, the two countries’ foreign ministers said on Thursday.
U.S., Pakistan negotiators had been due to meet in Islamabad in the coming days to discuss a possible agreement that would see the two sides sign a deal for a $1 billion annual investment in water and wastewater treatment facilities for the Asian giants.
The United States is concerned about South Asian countries’ “further erosion of their sovereignty” and the potential impact of the project on its relationship with the region, according to a statement by the U,S.
and Pakistan foreign ministers.
The South Asian nations have been battling a global campaign to stop the project, which would include the installation of two giant dams on the Indian Ocean and the creation of a massive new aquifer in Pakistan.
A group of 12 countries including Australia and the United States filed a complaint against Pakistan last month over a plan to build a 1,800-mile (2,800 km) aquifer through the disputed waters.
A United Nations panel of experts said last week it was worried about “serious concerns” about the project.
Pakistan has been a staunch supporter of the United Nations efforts to resolve the dispute over the disputed territory.
It is seeking to use the $1.6 billion deal with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to build two dams and the $7 billion project to extend a canal on the other side of the sea to the Gulf of Oman.
But the U.,S.
said Islamabad’s failure to stop projects “will lead to a further erosion of the sovereignty of the region and could result in further damage to the bilateral relationship.”