United States suspending most aid to Pakistan as it fails to curb terrorism

Pakistan US US-Pakistan United states pakistan foreign office terrorism Pakistan terrorism Donald trump world news Indian express news

Pakistan US US-Pakistan United states pakistan foreign office terrorism Pakistan terrorism Donald trump world news Indian express news

Its belated move to suspend assistance, after years of mistrust, highlights the perils of alienating a quasi-ally whose support is vital in the long-running Afghan conflict. Civilian assistance is not affected.

Referring to Trumps new strategy, Nauert said despite a sustained high-level engagement by Trump administration with the government of Pakistan, the Taliban and the Haqqani Network continue to find sanctuary inside Pakistan as they plot to destabilise Afghanistan and also attack the U.S. and allied personnel.

U.S. President Donald Trump's recent outburst on Pakistan will further boost economic and defence ties between Beijing and Islamabad, including China acquiring a Pakistani military base close to Iran's Chabahar port, an official media report here said on Friday.

Michael Kugelman, deputy director of the Wilson Center's South Asia program, said suspension of USA security assistance to Pakistan would not torpedo relations but it was a significant step backward.

"We are still working through some of those dollar numbers right now".

India, who for decades has accused Pakistan of being a state-sponsor of terrorism, welcomed Trump's tweet.

Under his new policy for Afghanistan, Trump has been putting increased pressure on Pakistan to root out safe havens for terror groups near its border with Afghanistan.

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South Asia expert Christine Fair of Georgetown University voiced concern that Pakistan might retaliate for the suspension by closing the highways from the port city of Karachi on which equipment is trucked to the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) and the airspace through which supplies are flown to US -led global forces in landlocked Afghanistan.

"Aid cuts will not hurt us", Pakistan's finance ministry head Miftah Ismail told Reuters.

Nikki Haley, US Ambassador to the United Nations, has confirmed that the Trump administration is withholding $255 million in security aid for Pakistan. "But that will have to change, and that will change immediately".

In August, he was more forthright and warned that Pakistan "has much to lose" if ig persisted in aiding terrorists. Earlier this year Washington suspended $255 million in FMF.

At the same time, Nauert made it clear that the United States action has nothing to do with Pakistan not taking action against the Mumbai terror attack mastermind and JuD chief Hafiz Saeed. In the 1990s, Washington imposed aid-cutting sanctions related to Pakistan's nuclear program and a military coup that deposed an elected prime minister.

Since then, USA economic aid to Pakistan has totaled around $33.4 billion since 2002.

Since 2002, US aid to Pakistan has totaled almost $34 billion but declined in recent years, according to the Congressional Research Service. The $33 billion Trump referred to represents all USA military and economic aid to Pakistan since 2002.

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Some regional analysts question whether the Trump administration has a plan for how to move forward, or if the decision to cut funding was a reaction to recent comments from Pakistan's foreign minister, who accused Trump on Wednesday of lying about how much aid the US gives Pakistan.

Pakistan, which serves as a key transport route for supplies to USA forces in Afghanistan, denies harboring terrorists.

Nauert said that Pakistan's failure to take action against Lakshar-e-Taiba leader Hafeez Saeed was not a factor in the action.

"We can review our cooperation if it is not appreciated".

Pakistan has long rejected accusations that it fails to tackle the militants battling the Kabul government and USA -led foreign forces in Afghanistan, from sanctuaries on its side of the border.

On Thursday, the Trump administration notched up its criticism of Pakistan when the State Department included Pakistan on a list of countries that violate religious freedoms.

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