By Arul Louis
United Nations–President Donald Trump will go all out to cut off aid to Pakistan if it continues to back terrorists, US Permanent Representative Nikki Haley has warned.
“The President is willing to go to great lengths to stop all funding for Pakistan if they continue to harbour terrorism,” she told reporters here on Tuesday.
“The administration is withholding $255 million in assistance to Pakistan” because its “double game” of working with US at times and with terrorists at others “is not acceptable to this administration” she said.
“We expect far more cooperation from Pakistan in the fight against terrorism,” she added.
In her meeting with the media to outline the US priorities for 2018, Haley, who represents the administration’s hawkish positions, mentioned Pakistan’s terror ties as the third area of concern after Iran and North Korea.
In his first Tweet of the New Year, Trump had called out Pakistan for giving “safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan” while making “fools” of US leaders. “No More” continuing aid to Islamabad, he declared.
Haley said that withholding aid to Pakistan was not linked to Islamabad’s support for the General Assembly resolution criticising Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel although she had suggested before the vote that those backing it could lose aid.
It “has nothing to do with vote on Jerusalem. It is entirely connected to Pakistan’s harbouring of terrorists,” she said.
“However, as I said in December, we won’t forget the Jerusalem vote,” she added.
On Iran, Haley expressed support for those in Iran protesting against the government and said that she wanted to amplify their voices.
She said the US was calling for special sessions on the Iranian protests both at the UN headquarters in New York and at the Human Rights Council in Geneva.
Haley said that the US would never accept North Korea as a nuclear power and threatened more sanctions if it carried out any more nuclear or missile tests. (IANS)