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Following Trump tweet, USA to withhold $255 million in aid from Pakistan

07 January 2018

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

Pakistani Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif in a tweet Tuesday questioned Trump's assertions of giving Islamabad more than $33 billion dollars.

"Pakistan has made tremendous efforts and sacrifices in combating terrorism and made outstanding contributions to the worldwide anti-terrorism cause", said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang in Beijing.

Speaking during a meeting here on Thursday of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security, the Foreign Minister said the Trump administration disregarded the facts presented by Pakistan about the situation in Afghanistan.

The Trump administration will continue to "review Pakistan's level of cooperation", the official said.

"We can reasonably argue that Trump Administration's decision today (Monday) has abundantly vindicated India's stand as far as terror is concerned and as far as Pakistan's role in perpetrating terror is concerned", said Jitendra Singh, Minister of State in PMO.

On Monday, Trump said the USA had "foolishly" given Pakistan more than $33 billion in aid in the last 15 years and had gotten nothing in return but "lies & deceit".

The meeting was chaired by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and attended by Pakistan's Foreign, Interior, and Defense ministers, as well as the chiefs of staff of the Pakistan airforce, army, and navy.

Earlier on January 2, Pakistan summoned U.S. Ambassador David Hale in response to Trump's January 1 Twitter message and accused the United States of "mistrust". Overall, the USA gave Pakistan around $67 billion in aid between 1951 and 2011, according to the Center for Global Development, a think tank based in Washington, D.C.

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Nauert said that despite sustained high-level engagement with Pakistan's government, "the Taliban and Haqqani network continue to find sanctuary inside Pakistan as they plot to destabilize Afghanistan and attack USA and allied personnel".

The prime minister's statement said the real challenges in Afghanistan were political infighting, massive corruption, phenomenal growth of drug production, and the expansion of ungoverned spaces inside Afghanistan full of sanctuaries for multiple global terrorist organizations that pose a direct threat to Afghanistan, its neighbors, and the region.

Foreign Minister Asif held both the USA and India responsible for the prevailing unrest in the region, saying that the "instability in the region suits both the U.S. and India".

"America is frustrated over defeat in Afghanistan".

Asif added that all financial aid from the United States had been "properly audited" and that "services [were] rendered".

The US carried out some 60,000 attacks from Pakistani soil, it said. "We have two big powers with us as Washington attempts to pressurise Pakistan ". "If the funds that Pakistan receives from the USA are cut off, this can exert direct pressure on Pakistan and we welcome this effort".

The frequency of suspected USA drone attacks near the Pakistani-Afghan border has increased notably since Trump introduced his Afghanistan strategy in August.

The committee, in a statement issued by the prime minister's office, did not name Trump but spoke of "deep disappointment" at a slew of critical comments coming from US officials over the past few months.

Following Trump tweet, USA to withhold $255 million in aid from Pakistan