A US Congressional report has said that the security assistance to Pakistan would remain suspended pending “decisive and irreversible” action against terrorist groups. This comes at a time when Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan is all set to visit Washington from 21-23 July at the invitation of the US President Donald Trump.
In its latest report on Pakistan, the independent Congressional Research Service (CRS) said, “Pakistan is a haven for numerous Islamist extremist and terrorist groups, and successive Pakistani governments are widely believed to have tolerated and even supported some of these as proxies in Islamabad’s historical conflicts with its neighbours”.
The CRS publishes reports on issues of interest for lawmakers to make informed decisions. It is an independent and bipartisan research wing of the US Congress. The report is prepared by experts and is not the official view of Congress.
As per reports, Imran Khan is hoping to mend the relationship between the two countries and attract more investment. Pakistan hopes do this in exchange for full cooperation in ending the Afghanistan war fighting militant threats.
Just two days ago, Pakistan had arrested the 26/11 terror attack mastermind and Lashkar-e-Taiba chief Hafiz Saeed. Reports suggest that his arrest would help Pakistan in getting favourable results in its talks with the US President.
The US President had, in fact, applauded Pakistan for the arrest. However, in his tweet, Trump had suggested the Hafiz Saeed had been hiding from the authorities in Pakistan. The US House Foreign Affairs Committee slammed Trump’s tweet by highlighting that Pakistan was not searching for the US proscribed terrorist for the last 10 years as claimed by the President. They had also specified that Hafiz has been living freely in the country and was arrested multiple times only to be released again.
In November last year, at the direction of President Trump, the US had suspended $1.66 billion in security assistance aid to Pakistan. The decision had come days after Trump statements slamming Pakistan of not doing ‘a damn thing’ for the US, alleging that its government had helped Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden hide near its garrison city of Abbottabad.
Pakistan is trying hard to prevent the extradition of Jabir Sadiq, a close aide of Dawood Ibrahim. Pakistan fears that his extradition may expose ISI’s link with Dawood Ibrahim.