WASHINGTON: United States President Donald Trump is “not satisfied” with the progress shown by Pakistan in its fight against terrorism, said the White House deputy press secretary on Thursday during a press briefing.
Deputy press secretary Raj Shah, while answering a question on Trump’s South-Asia policy stated that “we have restored some clarity in our relationship with Pakistan. For the first time we’re holding Pakistan accountable for its actions.”
However, the deputy press secretary stated further that while the US has seen modest progress in terms of Pakistan’s actual acknowledgement of these concerns, the “President is not satisfied with progress when it comes to Pakistan.”
Shah also shed light on the country’s progress in Afghanistan saying that they’ve “made significant progress against Islamic State, reducing their presence and eliminating hundreds of fighters.”
“We’ve eliminated their top leaders, and we’re working relentlessly to target their leadership and bases wherever they emerge,” he added further.
In August 2017, Trump had laid down a policy for South-Asia and warned the approach would now be more pragmatic than idealistic. Security assistance to Afghanistan was “not a blank check” he said, warning he would not send the military to “construct democracies in faraway lands or create democracies in our own image.”
Trump indicated that this single-minded approach would extend to US relations with Pakistan, which consecutive US administrations have criticised for links with the Taliban and for harbouring influential figures from major terrorist groups, such as Osama bin Laden.
“We can no longer be silent about Pakistan’s safe havens for terrorist organisations,” he said, warning that vital aid could be cut.
“We have been paying Pakistan billions and billions of dollars. At the same time they are housing the very terrorists that we are fighting,” he claimed. “That will have to change and that will change immediately.”__Tribune.com