Trump tweets are not considered official US policy: PM Abbasi

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in an interview to Washington Post said he does not consider US President Donald Trump’s tweet on Pakistan as part of American policy.

“Official policies are not communicated via tweets but rather through official documents or meetings,” said the premier.

On New Year’s Day, Donald Trump had tweeted that US ‘foolishly’ gave aid to Pakistan over the course of 15 years but Islamabad remained deceitful by providing safe havens to ‘terrorists’ from Afghanistan.

The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies & deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 1, 2018

Pakistan calls for ‘clear Afghan policy’ as Trump administration moves to mend ties

Abbasi also said since the past 15 years the United States and Pakistan’s relations have been going downhill despite maintaing a strong relationship prior to that. He said the US was not providing any economic aid to Pakistan and the amount of security aid was also minimal.

The PM also reiterated that Pakistan is fighting the largest war on terror. “We have 200,000 troops fighting a war against terror today on the western border. We have lost 6,500 troops. We have defeated the same enemy the rest of the world failed to defeat in Afghanistan, on the same terrain, with our own resources.”

Abbasi further said that there has not been a single instance “where if actual intelligence has been provided [to us], it has not been acted upon.”

The premier also echoed the country’s official policy stating there are no terrorist sanctuaries in Pakistan, saying “if someone provides us with a location, we take action against that.”

He further stated that Pakistan continues “to provide the United States with air and ground logistics for Afghanistan without any contract or payment” and this would not be affected by the Trump tweet.

Abbasi also urged Trump to look at the situation from Pakistan’s viewpoint, saying “the reality of Pakistan is very different from the perception he [Trump] has.”

US calls on Pakistan to immediately arrest or expel Taliban leaders

The premier was also asked about the Osama bin Laden raid in 2011, and whether that was a reason why relations between the countries were affected. Reiterating that Pakistan was not ‘hiding’ bin Laden, Abbasi stated that Pakistan’s sovereignty was affected and tha “nobody disputed that Osama was a wanted criminal, but Pakistan should have been informed.”

Talking about internal politics of the country, the PM was asked about the ouster of Nawaz Sharif and he stated “the Supreme Court made a decision that is questionable, but there is no recourse, because it is a Supreme Court decision.”


Says Donald Trump’s tweet does not reflect ground realities in Pakistan

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