Pakistan army chief: USA general called, offered assurances


The move, first announced by Trump in a New Year's Day tweet, sparked indignation in Pakistan, which has long denied the US accusations of militant support, and accused Washington of dismissing the sacrifices it has made in the war on extremism.

General Votel, who is overseeing the United States campaign in Afghanistan, apprised General Bajwa about the U.S. decision regarding the security assistance and Coalition Support Fund.

Bajwa responded that Pakistan is fully aware of concerns laid out by the United States in relation to the terrorist activities of Afghan nationals in Pakistan, and his country is already engaged in several operations against those militants, AP reports. Votel also told Bajwa the " not contemplating any unilateral action inside Pakistan", it continued.

Bajwa made the comments to Votel earlier this week during a phone call, a spokesman for Pakistan's military said in a statement on Friday.

In Washington, a senior State Department official expressed hope that the two countries would come to terms and that Pakistan would meet US requests for the handover of captured terrorism suspects. It added that Bajwa told Votel Pakistan was fully aware of the US concerns regarding activities of Afghan nationals in Pakistan and is already undertaking several operations against militants.

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Some U.S. and Afghan officials anxious that Pakistan would retaliate by ceasing to share intelligence or raising the costs for U.S. -led North Atlantic Treaty Organisation forces to use Pakistani air and land corridors into Afghanistan. The committee at the time said that the US was scapegoating Pakistan for its own failure to bring peace to Afghanistan after 16 years of war. COAS further said that Pakistan will keep supporting all initiatives for peace in Afghanistan despite the tendency to scapegoat Pakistan, as peace in Afghanistan is the only way to move towards enduring peace and stability in the region.

Officials said the administration had frozen payments from the "coalition support fund" set aside to reimburse Pakistani spending on counter-terror operations, worth $900 million. "They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help".

Also in question is nearly $1 billion of USA military equipment that has allowed Pakistan access to advanced military technology.

The announcement followed President Donald Trump's surprising New Year's day tweet, in which he said Washington had "foolishly" given Pakistan $33 billion in aid over the past 15 years and in return received "deceit and lies".