US blocks $255 million in military aid to Pakistan


Agencies, Washington The US has withheld $255 million in military aid to Pakistan because of Islamabad failure to confront terrorist networks inside its territory. “The United States does not plan to spend the $255 million in FY 2016 foreign military financing for Pakistan at this time,” a National Security Council spokesman said. “The President has made clear that the United States expects Pakistan to take decisive action against terrorists and militants on its soil, and that Pakistan’s actions in support of the South Asia strategy will ultimately determine the trajectory of our relationship, including future security assistance.” The Council official said the administration would continue to review Pakistan’s level of cooperation in security areas.On Monday, Trump had threatened to cut off aid to Pakistan, accusing the country of giving nothing in return except for “lies and deceit”. The administration had first said in August it was withholding the $255 million, which was part of a $1.1 billion aid package authorized in 2016 by Congress. The money was put on hold until Pakistan agreed to do more to combat terrorist networks. Pakistan’s National Security Committee is meeting on Tuesday. Reports emanating from Islamabad said the NSC meeting will be chaired by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and other top civilian and military leadership of the country. Pakistan’s Ambassador the United States Aizaz Chaudhry has also arrived in Pakistan to brief the NSC on his meeting with high-level officials in the US. On Monday, Pakistan’s Foreign Office summoned US Ambassador David Hale to record a protest over President Trump’s tweet.Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif, in a reply to Trump’s tweet, said Pakistan will let the world know the truth.