Page last updated at 09:54 GMT, Friday, 25 September 2009 10:54 UK

Donors agree fund for Pakistan

Gordon Brown (left) and Asif Ali Zardari in New Tork
Mr Brown announced $74m in aid to Pakistan during the meeting.

The Pakistani government and the World Bank have announced a fund designed to restore the country's infrastructure.

Money collected in the trust will go towards war-hit areas of North West Frontier Province (NWFP), the tribal areas and parts of Balochistan.

The Multi Donor Trust Fund (MDTF )fund was agreed during a Friends of Democratic Pakistan meeting in the US.

The meeting was attended by US President Barack Obama and the leaders of more than 12 nations.

'Security improving'

"The violent extremists within Pakistan pose a threat to the region, to the United States, and to the world, " President Obama told the representatives of more than 20 countries and five international organizations who came together for the talks.

"Just as we will help Pakistan strengthen the capacity that it needs to root out violent extremists, we are also committed to working with all of you to help Pakistan improve the basic services that its people depend upon: schools, roads, and hospitals," he said in a prepared text of his remarks.

A key role of the fund will be to oversee reconstruction and peace building, following on from a donors meeting in April in which $5bn was pledged in aid to Pakistan.

"Today, three months after the military campaign in the Swat Valley began, security is improving and schools have reopened in most places," World Bank Group President Robert B Zoellick said after the MDTF was agreed.

"It is critical now to reach the millions of people touched by this massive disruption with quick and effective assistance.

British PM Gordon Brown said that the new trust fund "will come up with sustained financial support for Pakistan's economic development and prosperity".

Mr Brown appeared jointly with President Zardari at the conclusion of Friends of Democratic Pakistan summit and announced $74m in British economic aid for development of tribal areas bordering Afghanistan.

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