ISLAMABAD US Acting Special Representative for Pakistan and Afghanistan Frank Ruggiero Thursday announced $190 million aid for victims of last years floods, fulfilling a pledge by his predecessor Richard Holbrooke who died last month. Speaking to reporters alongside Finance Minister Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Ruggiero said the money would go towards the governments cash compensation scheme offering over $1,000 for the 1.6 million worst-hit families. Im pleased to be here today to fulfil a pledge made by my former boss and Pakistans great friend, Special Representative Richard Holbrooke, said Ruggiero, who is on his first visit to Pakistan since taking up his new assignment. I know that Ambassador Holbrooke would have wanted to make this announcement personally as he was very committed to responding to the needs of the flood victims. It will be used in a very transparent way... and it will be transferred to needy people, he said. The money for the fund is part of a $500 million accelerated package diverted from a three-year $7.5 billion aid bill agreed in Washington. Shaikh welcomed the funds and paid tribute to Holbrooke. He was a great friend of Pakistan and had a particular passion for helping Pakistani people. This particular initiative was a drive by him to get money quickly into the hands of those flood affected people who need to rebuild their lives, he said. Earlier, Ruggiero and Shaikh signed an agreement for the financial assistance through the Citizens Damage Compensation Fund (CDCF) at the Ministry of Finance. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani urged the United States to speed up the release of funds of high visibility projects, particularly in energy sector, from the appropriated amount pledged by the US Congress under Kerry-Lugar assistance package. He regretted that important donor countries had not fully fulfilled their pledges made bilaterally or at the Tokyo Donors Conference to help Pakistan overcome the severe negative impact on its economy in the wake of the world economic recession, war on terror, devastating floods and the rising oil and gas prices. The prime minister was talking to Ruggiero, who called on him at his Parliament House Chamber. US Ambassador to Pakistan Cameron Munter was also present in the meeting. Reiterating his govts resolve to continue war on terror, Gilani underlined that the assistance being offered by the friends and allies as well as by the international financial institutions should have taken into account the objective conditions and Pakistans sacrifices to ensure that ordinary Pakistanis did not face further hardships. He hoped that the USAID would fast-track its assistance for development purposes and release the funds meant for the projects agreed during the last session of strategic dialogue. He also called upon the US government to expedite the reimbursement of Coalition Support Fund payments and work with the new Congress for the ROZs legislation besides establishment of Enterprise Fund to help Pakistan overcome present difficulties. Gilani welcomed the signing of agreements earlier in the day by the two countries on the US contributions of $ 190 million for damage compensation fund which he hoped will contribute towards his governments efforts to redress the hardship of the flood-affected people. He also apprised Ruggiero of his discussion with Afghan leadership during his visit to Kabul last month and stated that he would be having an in-depth discussion with Prof Barhanuddin Rabbani, Chairman High Council of Peace in Afghanistan, in the upcoming meeting. He stressed that Pakistan supported political dialogue and reconciliation process in Afghanistan but believed that it should be Afghan led and Afghan owned. The US diplomat conveyed heartfelt condolences on the sad assassination of Salmaan Taseer and informed Gilani that he had been sent to Pakistan by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to convey the US govts firm commitment to continue with its strategic partnership with Pakistan. President Obama fully recognises the sacrifices of the Pakistani armed forces and civilian population in the war against terror and is cognizant of the economic difficulties that Pakistan has to face in the present circumstances. He said during his visit, he would sign the assistance contract for construction of two dams in Pakistan while his govt would expedite the disbursement of assistance under the Kerry-Lugar legislation through the USAID and the payments under the CSF. Federal Minister for Finance Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Minister of State Hina Rabbani Khar, Senator Sughra Imam and senior government officials were also present in the meeting.