Trump could drive Pakistan towards 'full service' to China

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"We know that they can do more to stop terrorism and we want them to do that", White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said on January 2, adding that further action will be announced within 48 hours.

The White House warning came after the US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, told reporters in NY that "there are clear reasons" for the Trump administration to withhold $255 million in assistance to Pakistan.

"There are clear reasons for this".

Pakistan has criticized and noted with "deep disappointment" charges contained in a New Year tweet by U.S. President Donald Trump and said Islamabad could not be held responsible for the "collective failure" in Afghanistan.

Pakistani officials strongly rebuked U.S. President Donald Trump for accusing the country of providing a "safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan" and threatening to cut off U.S. aid. "That game is not acceptable to this administration".

He said despite longstanding U.S. allegations against Pakistan allowing militants to operate from its territory, the two countries have a lot to build on, including Islamabad's efforts to stay on democratic course and continue its fight against terrorists against all odds.

In his first Tweet of the year on Monday, Trump accused Pakistan for lying to the United States and offering "little help" in hunting terrorists in Afghanistan. "No more!" Trump tweeted.

Pakistan's foreign minister Khawaja Asif in a tweet challenged President Trump's claim that the USA has given Pakistan more than $33 billion dollars as aid over the last 15 years, saying verification by an audit firm would prove the United States president wrong.

But a sizable portion of the payments under CSF are tied to Pakistan's actions against terrorism - specifically the Haqqani Network, an Afghan Taliban affiliate - that must be certified by the administration for congress to clear the bill.

However, he said, in case the United States took action against Pakistan, it would be responded to in accordance with the aspirations of the Pakistani people.

However, China gave Islamabad its backing, with Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang saying that Pakistan "has made a prominent contribution to global antiterror efforts".

Responding to the oft-repeated allegations, Maj Gen Ghafoor, the military's media wing chief, said Pakistan had taken action against the Haqqani network.

Islamabad bristles at the suggestion it is not doing enough to fight militants, noting that its casualties at the hands of Islamists since 2001 number in the tens of thousands.

Meanwhile, Syed Khursheed Shah, the leader of the opposition in the National Assembly, urged Pakistani politicians to come together and issue a bipartisan "unified response" to Trump's recent statements against Islamabad, reports Dawn. The meeting, which lasted almost three hours, was brought forward by a day and followed an earlier meeting of army generals.

According to the Express Tribune, Pakistan has already made a decision to reconsider its ties to the United States and "adopt a tough stance" following Trump's comments.

But that's precisely what Trump's tweet has allowed Islamabad to do: tout the lost lives as entirely Washington's doing, and point to the shared "land and air spaces" along with "military intel" in the War on Terror, while simultaneously claiming that Pakistan should never have entered the war to begin with.

Trump had reasoned that the United States is "starting to develop a much better relationship with Pakistan and its leaders". As an example, we pay the Palestinians HUNDRED OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS a year and get no appreciation or respect.

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