Pentagon to squarely cut $300m in aid to Pakistan

Sep 03, 2018, 09:13 IST | Agencies

Days before Mike Pompeo's visit, US cancels aid over Pakistan's failure to act against terror groups like the Haqqani network and Lashkar-e-Taiba

Pentagon to squarely cut $300m in aid to Pakistan
In this file photo taken on January 5, Pakistani demonstrators take part in a protest against US aid cuts in Lahore. Pic/AFP

The US will cancel $300 million in military aid to Pakistan over its failure to take "decisive actions" to support President Donald Trump's new South Asia policy and act against terror groups like the Haqqani network and Lashkar-e-Taiba, the Pentagon has announced.

The announcement comes just days before US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is due to visit Pakistan to meet the country's new prime minister Imran Khan. The US and others have long complained that Pakistan provides safe haven to militant networks, allowing them to carry out cross-border attacks in Afghanistan. The Pentagon's move is part of a broader suspension of aid announced in January.

The Pentagon has now sought Congressional determination to re-programme USD 300 million of its Coalition Support Fund (CSF) for Pakistan "due to a lack of Pakistani decisive actions in support of the South Asia Strategy", said Pentagon Spokesman Kone Faulkner.

He said the US military would aim to spend the money on other "urgent priorities" before the funds expire on September 30, 2018. "This is not a new decision or a new announcement," said Faulkner.

'Nothing but lies and deceit'
* Since assuming office, Trump has been tough on Pakistan over its inaction against terror groups, saying Washington has got "nothing but lies and deceit" in return for millions of dollars in aid.
* In January, the US suspended more than $1.15 billion security assistance to Pakistan, accusing it of harbouring terror groups like the Afghan Taliban and the Haqqani Network.

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