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International Development: Anger as aid is linked to security

By Kim Sengupta

Published 21/10/2010

The overseas aid budget has been protected and will rise to £11.5bn by 2015. This will enable the UK to reach the UN's target of member states donating 0.7 per cent of national income in aid by 2013.

However, there was anger yesterday that aid is being "joined-up" with national security concerns. The amount of aid to states where it could supposedly be used for conflict prevention, such as Afghanistan and Pakistan, will double to £3.8bn.

The Government says Britain should give more aid to insecure countries which might pose a danger to British interests. But critics counter this may divert aid from extremely poor, but more stable, countries.

Eight projects in Russia and China will be cut, but those in India, a country the Coalition Government is assiduously cultivating, will remain the same and may even rise.

The effect of the cuts will also be felt in London, where drastic surgery will be needed to reduce the number of jobs in, and the expenses of, administration.

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