Pakistan's National Security Committee,
headed by its prime minister and its president, leader of the opposition, state
chief ministers and three services chiefs as other members, has outrightly
rejected US President Donald Trump's South Asia policy which criticised
Pakistan heavily for not doing enough and promoting terrorism in Afghanistan in
spite of taking US aid money in the name of cracking down on Afghan terror
groups like the Haqqani Network and the Taliban operating from Pakistan.
The Pak NSC meeting was held
in Islamabad today to discuss Trump's revamped South Asia policy focusing on
Afghanistan. After the meeting, Nafees Zakaria, spokesperson of Pakistan's
foreign ministry, in a series of tweets, said that the NSC outrightly rejected
allegations against Pakistan adding that making Pakistan a scapegoat would not
help in stabilizing Afghanistan.
NEW US POLICY ON AFGHANISTAN
Under his government’s
Afghanistan Policy, Trump has announced several departures from his established
stand to withdraw the US from the war-torn South Asian nation. The new US
policy on Afghanistan pushes for increasing the number of US troops in
Afghanistan and gives the forces free hand to handle insurgents instead of micro-managing
them from the Washington. Also, developing a strategic partnership with India is
going to be a critical part of new US’ strategy for South Asia in future as per
the revamped policy.
Trump has also slammed Pakistan
and has warned that the US will no longer be silent about Pakistan’s
double-dealings. He has demanded that this Pakistan attitude of doublespeak has
to change immediately.
Pakistan is naturally more
pained at the prospect of a larger Indian role in Afghanistan which it sees
inimical to its interests and the Pak NSC observed that India cannot be a net
security provider in the South Asia region it has conflictual relationships
with all its neighbours and is pursuing a policy of destabilizing Pakistan from
the east and the west, a Radio Pakistan release on the meeting said.
PAKISTAN REPEATS ANTI-INDIA RANT
Repeating the anti-India rant,
the Pak committee expressed deep concern at Indian policies inimical to peace
in the region including interference in the internal affairs of neighbouring
countries and using terrorism as an instrument of state policy.
Pakistan, it seems, is also
pained at Trump's charges of taking the US money while not being accountable
for it. While unveiling his new South Asia Policy, Trump had said that “the US
has been paying Pakistan billions and billions of dollars at the same time they
are housing the very terrorists that US is fighting.”
The NSC of Pakistan rejected
this terming it misleading and instead projected Pakistan as a victim, "The
claims of billions of dollars in aid to Pakistan are misleading to the extent
that the reimbursements to Pakistan since 2001 only account for part of the
cost of ground facilities and air corridors used by the United States for its
operations in Afghanistan, rather than any financial aid or assistance."
Well, that is a plain lie.
According to a Reuters report, since 2011, Pakistan has received over $15
Billion in US aid including over $5 Billion in economic assistance.
Then contradicting itself, it
went on to say that instead of any financial or material assistance, there
should be understanding and recognition of Pakistan's efforts, contributions
and sacrifice of thousands of Pakistanis and claimed that Pakistan has suffered
over 120 billion US dollars of economic losses due to terrorism.
Pakistan also refuted Trump's
allegations of Pakistan being a safe haven for terrorists and instead blamed
Afghanistan for having safe terror havens and demanded effective and immediate
US military efforts to eliminate sanctuaries harbouring terrorists and
miscreants on the Afghan soil including those responsible for fomenting terror