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US and Pakistan relations in the coming year

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Pakistanis protest in Karachi to condemn a tweet from Donald Trump in which he said the us has "foolishly" handed the country $33 billion in aid.

The US aid suspension was announced days after President Trump tweeted that the US had foolishly given Pakistan 33 billion dollars in aid over 15 years and was rewarded with "nothing but lies and deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools".

The US Defense Department has been instructed to stop making payments from Coalition Support Funds set aside to refund Pakistani spending on counter-terrorist operations.

The U.S. State Department refused to provide an exact figure for how much aid it the Trump administration would suspend, arguing that the numbers are still being calculated.

The key element in the new USA strategy for Afghanistan is to launch a two-pronged military offensive that inflicts a military defeat on the Taliban and forces them to join the Afghan reconciliation process on Kabul's conditions, diplomatic sources told Dawn News.

Commenting on the U.S. dealing with Pakistan, a senior official from the Trump administration said that United States is looking beyond the security assistance issue.

US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis at his weekend briefing at the Pentagon urged Islamabad to cooperate with the US in defeating the Afghan Taliban, including the Haqqani Network which, he says, has safe havens inside Pakistan and uses them to recuperate and re-launch attacks into Afghanistan. Of the total $900 million CSF earmarked for 2017, $400 million is tied to a certification that Pakistan is taking adequate measures against the Haqqani Network.

"At this stage all Fiscal Year 17 CSF have been suspended, so that's the entire amount of $900 million", Andrews said.

'I'm not concerned, ' the defense secretary tells reporters after the White House announced an intention to suspend military aid to Islamabad. "But I'll give my advice on it to the President".

"I'm not saying it would be impossible, but it would not be easy", the senior administration official said. The deadline for that is September 30 this year. They said they could make exceptions to fund critical US national security priorities.

Now, the money that has been suspended at this time does not mean that it will be suspended forever, she said. "They have to take decisive steps", she added. Obviously, Pakistan is important, an important relationship to the USA, because together we can work hard to combat terrorism.

According to the daily, the State Bank of Pakistan's statement "may not be a dramatic policy change, but the timing made the move significant".

"We have not done anything that's irreversible here".

But at this time, the U.S. prefers to cooperate with Pakistan and is hopeful about it, the official said.

Trump's frustrations are shared by some US lawmakers, who accused Pakistan of playing a double game by allowing militant groups sanctuary - which Islamabad denies - despite promising to crack down on them.

Historically, the United States has provided Pakistan over $ 1 billion in security assistance annually.

This is not the first time, of course, that USA officials have called Pakistan out for its perfidy despite American generosity.

The US wants action against the existing safe havens of the Taliban and the Haqqani network and demolish its ability to carry out strikes across the border in Afghanistan, the Official said and expressed hope that Pakistan would take actions that the US was seeking.

This suspension includes FMF 2016 ($255 million) as well as prior year FMF that has not yet been spent or delivered. However, the suspension does not include U.S. civilian assistance programs in Pakistan. "Well Pakistan didn't even help us find Bin Laden, even though he was living in one of their cities for years", he said in a video statement on Twitter.

The Pentagon and the State Department officials left the door open for reconciliation with Islamabad. The elements of the Pakistani government that needs to take the steps that we're talking about are not touched by civilian assistance.

"There is a $ 10 million reward out for information leading to his re-arrest, the person who is the mastermind of the Mumbai attacks who was let go in Pakistan", Nauert said. "We are having conversations on a weekly basis at senior levels with the Pakistanis". After all, a true breach in U.S. -Pakistan relations isn't in Beijing's interests either, given its desire for stability within both Pakistan and Afghanistan.

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