US Suspends Security Aid To Pakistan Over Terrorists

Katrina Barker
January 5, 2018

Ms Nauert said that despite high-level talks between Washington and Pakistan's government, "the Taliban and Haqqani network continue to find sanctuary inside Pakistan as they plot to destabilise Afghanistan and attack U.S. and allied personnel".

Later that month, the administration notified Pakistan that it was delaying a payment of $255 million in military aid, pending progress against Haqqani network militants who the US says are based in Pakistan and aid the Taliban.

Three days after US President Donald Trump's tweet on Pakistan, Washington announced Thursday that it would suspend almost all security assistance to Pakistan, which could affect at least $1.3 billion Dollars in annual aid, according to a report by New York Times.

The decision on security assistance came after US President Donald Trump lashed out at Pakistan in a New Year tweet, accusing the longstanding American ally of using "lies and deceit" to win US aid while harboring terrorists.

Putting pressure on Pakistan's government to change its policies toward neighboring Afghanistan is central to the Trump administration's strategy, announced in August, to stabilize the region and bring an end to America's longest war, now in its 17th year.

"We will not be delivering military equipment or transfer security-related funds to Pakistan", State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said on Thursday.

At the same time, Nauert made it clear that the U.S. action has nothing to do with Pakistan not taking action against the Mumbai terror attack mastermind and JuD chief Hafiz Saeed. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. I also rubbished the claim of $33 billion and added that Pakistan lost $123 billion in USA imposed war besides 70,000 human casualties.

Since then, USA economic aid to Pakistan has totaled around $33.4 billion since 2002. However, the figure is expected to be as much as $1.3 billion.

During an interaction with Pentagon reporters, Defence Secretary Jim Mattis did not respond to question if he was in favour of cutting off the aid to Pakistan. However, details over where the money goes isn't clear, and Pakistan official reaction has downplayed the significance of the funds.

"The Trump administration decision has abundantly vindicated India's stand as far as terror is concerned and as far as the role of Pakistan is concerned in perpetrating terrorism", according to minister of state in Prime Minister's Office Jitendra Singh, NDTV reported on January 2, 2018.

The financial aid started flowing soon after the 9/11 attacks on NY and Washington, following 11 years of sanctions over Pakistan's nuclear weapons program.

"No amount of coercion can dictate us how to continue". "No more", he said, of Washington's aid to Pakistan.

The military aid, known as foreign military financing, "promotes the development of Pakistan's long-term [counter-insurgency/counter-terrorism] capabilities and improves Pakistan's ability to participate in maritime security operations and counter-maritime piracy", according to the State Department.

Currently, the USA and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation depend on Pakistan for logistical support for their operations in Afghanistan, a key part of fighting terrorism.

Yesterday, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had placed Pakistan on a special watch list for severe violations of religious freedom.

"A balanced response is needed that would preserve the country's dignity while engaging with the U.S.", Sadiq said.

Bilateral relations became increasingly fraught since the U.S. special-forces raid in Abbottabad, Pakistan, that led killed al-Qaeda leader Osama bin-Laden in May 2011.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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