House panel OKs defense bill, limits Pakistan aid

By the Associated Press | June 14, 2011 | 12:44 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House Appropriations Committee has approved a defense spending bill that imposes limits on U.S. aid to Pakistan and creates a special bipartisan group to review the U.S. role in Afghanistan.

The panel gave the go-ahead to the bill on a voice vote Tuesday. The legislation would provide $530 billion for the Defense Department and $119 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The bill is $9 billion less than President Barack Obama requested.

The bill would withhold 75 percent of the $1.1 billion in U.S. aid to Pakistan until the administration reports to Congress on how it would spend the money. Reflecting the frustration with Pakistan's effort in the war on terrorism, the committee adopted an amendment that gives Congress even more power to review the spending.