"We support the proposed sale of eight F-16s to Pakistan to assist Pakistan's counterterrorism and counterinsurgency operations. Pakistan's current F-16s have proven critical to the success of these operations to date," according to state department spokesperson Helaena W. White.
According to the Pakistani newspaper Dawn, Pakistani Ambassador to the US Jalil Abbas Jilani welcomed American efforts to supply the country with F-16 jets despite growing resistance from India and US lawmakers, who believe the fighter jets will be used against India.
USA said relationship with India is of 21st century and F-16 sale to Pakistan, pls tell @potus What type of Relation you were talking about?— Anshul Saxena (@AskAnshul) February 26, 2016
Earlier this month, Indian Foreign Secretary Subrahmanyam Jaishankar summoned US Ambassador to India Richard Verma on Saturday to express his disappointment with the US decision to sell F-16 fighter aircraft to Pakistan.
Both the Indian government and US lawmakers are united in their opinion that F-16 jets don't bring any assistance in counterterrorism operations and would likely end up being used against India.
Bob Corker, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman, together with Senator Rand Paul opposed the sale, saying a resolution of disapproval which seeks to break all arms sales to Pakistan was introduced on Thursday. If approved, the resolution would also halt the sale of the F-16 jets that requires passage by the Senate before March 12.
Last Monday, India received an offer from the US defense corporation Lockheed Martin to set up manufacturing of F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft in the country, local media quoted high-ranking sources.