Ahead of three-nation visit, Pak FM seeks directions from Sharif

Pauline Gross
August 27, 2017

The Trump administration is anxious that nuclear weapons and materials in Pakistan might land up in the hands of terrorist groups or individuals, the senior administration official said, on condition of anonymity.

In a paper published by USA think tank Hudson Institute earlier this year, analysts argued that Washington should cut financial aid and military supplies to Islamabad, and possibly consider declaring Pakistan a state sponsor of terrorism, the move that many in Islamabad would most likely view as a point of no return in Pak-US relations.

While an "uptick" in USA drone strikes on Pakistani soil without its consent would most likely lead to deterioration in Pak-US relations, the possibility of USA troops, the increased number of which was announced during Trump's televised address on Monday, chasing down suspected terrorists into Pakistan territory could also be in the cards as well.

He also regretted the USA failure to acknowledge the huge sacrifices of Pakistan in the war on terror.

The South Asia strategy announced by US President Donald Trump on Monday notes that the "nuclear weapons or materials could fall" into the wrong hands, the official said.

Forty percent of Afghan land is still under the control of Taliban, the federal minister said while speaking to Geo News.

"This approach is in tune with the prescriptions for Afghanistan issued by the previous USA administration, which, as is known, failed to improve the security in the region", she added.

As Pakistan finds itself in the crosshairs of U.S. President Donald Trump's Afghan strategy, cracks continue to deepen in Pak-US relations.

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"The foreign minister consulted Nawaz Sharif about his planned visit to China, Russia and Turkey and got certain directions in this regard", The Dawn quoted a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader, as saying. Russia, for its part, has gravitated towards Islamabad only recently. Not to mention that their joint connectivity project - China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) - offers unique economic opportunities for Pakistan as well as solves the nation's power shortages, something the US has failed to address in the decades being Pakistan's major ally. "The "difference of opinion" and "misperceptions" could be addressed through dialogue", he added.

The delegation was on a weeklong visit to Pakistan in coordination with the ISPR. "It is time for Pakistan to demonstrate its commitment to civilization, order, and to peace".

"Pakistani officials have cited Indian influence as a primary cause of instability and insecurity in Afghanistan".

Pakistan's political and military leaders have rejected President Donald Trump's allegation that Islamabad is harboring militants who battle U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

In a clear ultimatum to Islamabad, Trump said Pakistan had to change its "double game" policy or face the consequences.

"A country like India that is involved in state-sponsored terrorism can not be an effective partner in bringing peace to the region", he said.

"It's the most economically stable that it's been in a decade, thanks in part to massive Chinese investment, and it has managed to secure much of its border regions despite the withdrawal of most US combat forces".

Asif said 90 per cent of terrorist attacks in Pakistan were carried out on instructions from within Afghanistan.

Other reports by GizPress

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