Monday, 17 December, 2018

Pakistan summons USA ambassador over Donald Trump's tweet, registers protest

Pervez Masih  AP Pervez Masih AP
Patty Aguilar | 13 January, 2018, 03:00

The US yesterday announced that it is withholding its Dollars 255 million military aid to Pakistan.

Pakistan has summoned the USA ambassador, an embassy spokesman said January 2, in a rare public rebuke after Donald Trump lashed out at Islamabad with threats to cut aid over "lies" about militancy.

"They work with us at times, and they also harbor the terrorists that attack our troops in Afghanistan", she said.

The comments come as the White House has called on Pakistan to do more to fight terrorism and says it will announce "specific actions" to pressure Islamabad, possibly as soon as January 4.

Read the whole story from Business Insider.

Pakistani Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif further promised a "response" to Washington's accusation.

Trump's South Asia strategy announced in August emphasized that Pakistan would be held accountable for terror support in Afghanistan, where the president also authorized the deployment of thousands of additional US troops. He later told local media that it's actually the United States that's aiding terrorists making incursions into Pakistan.

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari in a series of tweets said that the U.S. was no longer interested in defeating terrorism.

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Ghafoor also hit back at USA ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, pointing to her Indian connection, when asked about Haley accusing Pakistan for double standards.

"A ruler surrendered in a single phone call, our country, we went through the worst bloodbath", said Asif. Haley said that withholding aid to Pakistan was not linked to Islamabad's support for the General Assembly resolution criticising Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel although she had suggested before the vote that those backing it could lose aid.

On Monday, Pakistan's Foreign Office summoned US Ambassador David Hale to record a protest over Trump's tweet.

"They give safe havens to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help".

Husain Haqqani, Pakistan's former ambassador to the United States between 2008-2011 and director of the South and Central Asia centre at the Hudson Institute, supported the idea of financial pressure on Islamabad to change its behaviour.

"Trump showed inferiority by mentioning 33 billion dollars so Pakistan has to review its policy of relations with United States now as it's the only solution of this issue", PPP leader said. He slammed Islamabad on Monday for "lies & deceit", saying the country had played US leaders for "fools", by not doing enough to control Islamic militants.

The minister recalled Pakistan's support for the U.S.at its own expense. 'The United States is asked to do a huge amount around the world.

It was not immediately clear what prompted Trump's criticism of Pakistan but he has long complained that Islamabad is not doing enough to tackle Islamist militants.

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