Washington: Frustrated at Pakistan’s inaction on terror groups of Afghan Taliban and Haqqani Network groups, the US yesterday suspended 2 billion USD in security aid to Pakistan a White House Official revealed.
The officer who wants to stay anonymous told such a drastic step has been taken against Pakistan since US President Donald Trump is unhappy with Pakistan failing to contain terror groups in the country.
The official added Trump has suspended the aid after no promising results were reported to him despite four months of high-level engagement with Pakistan. The officer also hinted on the lift of the suspension if Pakistan complies and takes strict action against the militant terrorists.
The White House official has clearly disagreed that US dumped Pakistan along with Pakistan’s allegations of US speaking India’s language of India.
“We do not believe this is the language of India. This is the language of the president and the US administration. So we just disagree with that,” said the official who was responding to a question to a statement made by Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Khawja Asif who had alleged that the US is “trumpeting India’s lies and deceit” and is speaking the “language of Indians”.
The official also said the suspension is mostly about the security assistance and does not include civilian assistance. “Prior year funding for equipment that have not yet been delivered would be suspended. It includes the USD 255 million in FMF (foreign military funding) that was notified to Congress in August of last year. It totals about billions worth of military assistance that has been planned,” the official said, adding, the suspension also includes USD 900 million in the Coalition Support Fund (CSF), which the US considers as security aid while Pakistan considers it as a reimbursement.
“That is what approximately USD2 billion worth of equipment and the Coalition support funding that that is in play,” the official said.
“I just want to be clear that it’s been suspended. Nothing’s been reprogrammed. We’re hopeful that we can lift the suspension and the aid would be able to go forward. But at this time that’s what is suspended,” the official said.
According to the White House, the administration is still working on the “exceptions to be made” in this suspension.
“There will be exceptions made. I think you can assume that you know things that are in the US national security, things that might be related to nuclear issues, end use monitoring of equipment. I don’t want to get into specific because the implementation is still being worked out but there certainly will be exceptions made when the items are deemed to be in the US national security interests,” the official said.
When asked about other steps like removing Pakistan from its non-NATO ally status, the official responded saying the US has a number of tools in its toolkit.
“We can take unilateral steps. We prefer to cooperate with Pakistan. We are hopeful that we will be able to cooperate in the future. But right now, we’re frustrated and we want to indicate to Pakistan our seriousness about the issue of dealing with safe havens,” the official said.
US President’s frustration on Pakistan for not taking any decisive action against the terrorist’s groups in Pakistan is posing a huge hindrance for US’s plans for its strategy on Afghanistan for the past 15 years.
“The president has shown that he is willing to speak with clarity when he talks about Pakistan and our relationship,” the official said.
“This can help to have a more effective policy toward Pakistan and we can get some better results this time around,” he said in response to a question.
Reacting to Trump move, Pakistan had earlier said, “We are engaged with the US Administration on the issue of security cooperation and await further details,” reported Times Now.