US freezes security aid to Pakistan over terrorist groups
Published: 01:21 PM, 5 January 2018
The US government is cutting almost all security aid to Pakistan, cause its failing attempt to deal with terrorist networks that operating on its soil.
The state department said the cuts would remain in place until Islamabad took action against the Haqqani network and the Afghan Taliban.
Earlier this week, President Trump accused Pakistan of lying and deceiving the US while receiving billions of dollars in aid.
The decision of the US stance has been praised by India and Afghanistan, but China, which is investing tens of billions in Pakistan, has backed it.
The Trump administration had already delayed to hand over $255m (£188m) in military aid to Pakistan.
Announcing such restrictions, state department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said she could not put a dollar value on how much aid was being cut.
She said the US government considered that the Afghan Taliban and the Haqqani network were destabilizing the region and also targeting US personnel.
On Thursday, the state department also placed Pakistan on a special watch list for severe violations of religious freedom.
The US and others have long complained that Pakistan helps the Afghan Taliban and their allies, the Haqqani network, allow them to carry out cross-border attacks in Afghanistan. But Pakistan denies such accusation.
Pakistan voluntarily joined Washington`s War on Terrorists after the 9/11 attacks and as a result, they received billions of dollars in assistance. That funding has been falling for some time because of US frustrations, but the uneasy relationship continued, as they need the cooperation of Pakistan against terrorist wars.
The Pakistanis say they`ve suffered great losses from the longstanding war against Islamist networks and are furious that Mr. Trump fails to acknowledge their role.
The Haqqani network is a militant group that focuses most of its activities on neighboring Afghanistan, which has complained for years that Pakistan allows them to operate from its soil across the border.
Both the Haqqani Network and the Afghan Taliban have launched attacks in Afghanistan that have killed US forces, and US officials have long argued that Pakistan, and specifically its ISI intelligence service, provides support to them.
Pakistan has been accused of using the Afghan Taliban to further its foreign policy interests in the country. The ISI first became involved in funding and training militants in Afghanistan after the Soviet invasion in 1979.
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