Pakistan, US must work together to defeat terrorism, says Aizaz

Source:  ARY News Published in Foreign Affairs on Saturday, January 13, 2018

WASHINGTON: Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States Aizaz Chaudhry says Islamabad and Washington must work together to defeat the common threat of terrorism.

While interacting with international media, the ambassador said cooperation between two countries was critical to achieving stability in Afghanistan.

He said nearly half of the Afghanistan was unstable which was source of concern for Pakistan, Central Asia and China.

Aizaz said the message by the US leadership has not gone well with Pakistan and its people and President Trump’s tweet was rather a surprise for all.

The ambassador stressed that the two countries should not be on collision course.

Last week, President Donald Trump froze payments worth $900 million from the “coalition support fund” for Pakistan, saying Islamabad is not doing enough to target Afghan Taliban and Haqqani group bases.

Also in question is almost $1 billion of US military equipment that has allowed Pakistan access to advanced military technology.

According to the US officials, Washington has conveyed to Islamabad specific and concrete steps that it could take to get security aid.

In his New Year tweet, Trump had accused Pakistan of lies and deceit. “They give safe havens to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!” he tweeted.

Trump’s accusations heightened tensions between Pakistan and the US. The tensions resulted in suspension of military assistance to Pakistan, announced by Trump led US administration on January 5.