WASHINGTON - A bill seeking removal of the major non-Nato ally status to Pakistan has been introduced in the US Congress, calling for stoppage of expedited supply of America’s sophisticated weaponry to Islamabad.

“It’s time to break ties with Pakistan, but at the very least, we should stop providing them the eligibility to obtain our own sophisticated weaponry in an expedited process. Too many of our own men and women have died because of Islamabad’s treachery,” Texas Congressman Ted Poe said after introducing HR 6391, the bill to remove the major non-Nato ally (MNNA) status from Pakistan.

In 2004, the then-President George Bush had granted Pakistan MNNA status in an effort to get Islamabad’s help to fight Al-Qaeda and the Taliban.

MNNA status is significant, granting critical benefits in the areas of foreign aid and defence cooperation.

A MNNA country is eligible for priority delivery of defence material, an expedited arms sale process, and a US loan guarantee programme, which backs up loans issued by private banks to finance arms exports.

It can also stockpile US military hardware, participate in defence research and development programmes, and be sold more sophisticated weaponry, said a statement issued by the office of the Republican Congressman.

Congressman Poe said eight years after its designation, the evidence shows that Pakistan has in fact been no ally of the US.

“It has cut off the supply route to our troops in Afghanistan, refusing to re-open it without the US apologising and paying three times as much as before. It harbors and cooperates with the Taliban who kill American troops,” he said. “The US Embassy in Kabul, which is American soil, was twice attacked by what US,” he said.

Meanwhile, Nato is scaling back joint operations with Afghans after an unprecedented number of Western soldiers were shot dead by their local colleagues and as anger erupts over an anti-Islam film, officers said Tuesday.

The move marks a setback to the US-led strategy for containing an 11-year Taliban insurgency, as a phased withdrawal of Western troops hinges on training and advising Afghan forces to take their place within two years. But Nato insisted partnering would continue at all levels and rushed to present the move as a change to mitigate the risk of joint operations, rather than a suspension of joint operations.

Under the new order, Nato and Pentagon officials said most joint patrols and advisory work with Afghans will be conducted at the battalion level and above.

Cooperation at a lower level will have to be “evaluated on a case-by-case basis and approved by” regional two-star commanders, the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said in a statement.