WASHINGTON - The Obama administration Wednesday opposed attempts by Democrats in the House of Representatives to attach strings to billions of dollars in proposed aid to Pakistan for combating the Taliban and Al-Qaeda militants. As part of the strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, President Barack Obama requested that Congress must approve additional military and civilian assistance for the key US ally in the war on terror. Top Pentagon and diplomatic officials asked Congress to earmark part of a $400 million package on training and equipping the Pakistani army to fight insurgents within its borders. At an afternoon hearing at the Capitol Hill, Undersecretary of Defence for Policy Michele Flournoy said the effort marked for the first time the Pentagon planned to direct anti-insurgency money towards training and outfitting of Pakistans army. The US is already aiding Pakistani special forces and the Frontier Corps. The multimillion funding request would be spent on Pakistan counterinsurgency missions only, and would be the first part of a total estimated $3 billion package over next five years to curb extremism in the region. Noting that tens of thousands of US troops are already in Afghanistan, Flournoy said It is very important to see this in the context of the fact that this is an integrated theatre, this border region. The administration also is close to finalising plans to provide training for the Pakistani military at a location outside Pakistan. While the site has not been decided yet, a senior administration official said on Wednesday that the issue would come up next week when Obama meets President Asif Ali Zardari. He said the expanded training come in response to a request from Pakistan. The Democrats and Republicans on the House Armed Services Committee questioned whether the money should be spent on an army that had long targeted India instead of insurgents. Following the bloody terror attacks in Mumbai, the Indian financial hub, late last year, Pakistan moved thousands of troops from the Afghan border to the Indian frontier. I do come from a part of the world where $400 million is still a lot of money, said Representative Gene Taylor, a Democrat. It seems to me that the Pakistani government considers India the primary threat, the Taliban not to be a threat. Representative Mike Coffman, a Republican, noted that 80 percent of the Pakistani army was focused on its border with India. Has that changed? he questioned. Vice-Admiral James Winnefeld, a top Pentagon strategy planner who also testified Wednesday, gave the example of Pakistani military chief Gen Ashfaq Kayani, who has lost more people out west than he has against India - and he knows it. He went on saying, He realises it, and the entire government is beginning to realise it more and more, that this is the real immediate threat, Winnefeld. Both Flournoy and Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher described stability of Pakistan as important as that of neighbouring Afghanistan, where as many as 68,000 US troops will be fighting a resurgent Taliban this year.