Washington: United States President Donald Trump has pulled up Pakistan for providing safe haven to terrorists and exhorted Islamabad to exhibit more commitment to fight terror.
Speaking from the Fort Myer military base in Arlington, Va., Trump said, Pakistani people have suffered from terror, but at same time Pakistan has been safe haven for terrorists.”
He further exhorted Islamabad to exhibit more commitment to fight terror.
It’s time for Pakistan to demonstrate its commitment to fight terror, said Trump, while unveiling America’s strategy in Afghanistan where the US troops have been fighting the war on terror, which was started by former US President George W. Bush.
“Pakistan has much to gain from partnering with our effort in Afghanistan. It has much to lose to harbour criminals and terrorists. In the past, Pakistan has been a valued partner and our militaries worked together against the common enemies. We recognize those contribution and sacrifices. But, Pakistan has also provided shelter those organsiations who try to kill our people,” said Trump.
He further added, “We have been paying Pakistan billions of dollars and the same time they are housing the very terrorists that we are fighting. No partnership can survive if a country is harbouring militants and terrorist to target US service members and officials. It is time for Pakistan to demonstrate its commitment to civilization and peace.”
Pakistan, a US ally in War on Terror, is accused of misusing the US aid mean for fighting terror.
US defense secretary Mattis said in July that the US has decided to block $350 million in coalition support funds to Pakistan as it had not taken “sufficient actions” against the dreaded Haqqani terror network which has been behind terror attacks in Afghanistan.
In July, the US listed Pakistan among the nations providing “safe havens” to terrorists saying terror groups like the LeT and JeM continued to operate, train, organise and fund-raise inside the country.
“Pakistan did not take sufficient action against other externally focused groups, such as Lashkar-e-Taiba ( LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammad in 2016, which continued to operate, train, organise, and fundraise in Pakistan,” said the annual ‘Country Report on Terrorism’ from the US state department.
Giving a double blow to Pakistan, Trump also has sought more help from India in Afghanistan.
Trump said we will develop a deeper strategic partnership with India, but we want them to help us more in Afghanistan.
“Another part of South Asia strategy for America to further develop its strategic partnership with India, the world’s largest democracy and key security and economic partner of US. We appreciate India’s important contribution to bring stability in Afghanistan. But, India makes billions of dollars in trade with the United States and we want them to help us more with Afghanistan especially in the area of economic consistence and development,” said Trump.
US President’s desire for an increased role of India in Afghanistan is a blow for Pakistan as it is opposed to Indian presence in Kabul.
It is notable that India has been actively helping Afghanistan in the reconstruction of the terror-torn country.
India aided the overthrow of the Taliban and became the largest regional provider of humanitarian and reconstruction aid to Afghanistan. Indians are working in various construction projects, as part of India’s rebuilding efforts in Afghanistan.