Islamabad – The National Assembly Standing Committee on Defence on Tuesday condemned and rejected the hostile and threatening statements of US President Donald Trump and US Commander in Afghanistan Gen John Nicholson against Pakistan.
In a resolution adopted during its meeting held here, the committee rejected the claim of the US president regarding safe havens of terrorists in Pakistan and noted with concern that 40 percent of the area in Afghanistan was not under the control of the Afghan government.
The committee also noted with concern that terrorists were using Afghan soil as safe havens.
The committee also rejected President Trump’s claim that billions of dollars in aid have been given to Pakistan, stating that Pakistan’s economy has suffered a loss of over $123 billion in the war on terror.
The committee also strongly condemned the massacre of Burmese Muslims and urged the United Nations to play its role in preventing the atrocities against the Muslims in Burma.
Later talking to the media, Defence Minister Khurram Dastagir refuted the BRICS countries claim about the alleged presence of militant groups in Pakistan.
“We have already said that there are no terrorist sanctuaries in Pakistan. Terrorist safe havens are found in Afghanistan; Pakistan does not fear any external aggression as its Army, Navy and Air Force are fully prepared to deal with any situation,” Dastagir said.
Dastagir said Pakistani security forces already have taken action against all terrorist groups and are in the process of eliminating their “remnants” in the country. Responding to a question, Dastagir said Pakistan seeks to amicably resolve issues with the United States, cautioning “any American action” would cause instability in the country.
The defence minister also cited US military assessments that say less than 60 percent of Afghan territory is under the control or influence of the Kabul government. “That is why we are all gravely concerned about the fact that 40 percent of Afghanistan has perhaps become a safe haven [for terrorists],” he said.
The minister added that his country is not feeling threatened by the US following the harshly worded Trump speech. “However, we are maintaining an extremely strict monitoring of our land, sea and air frontiers,” noted Dastagir.
He sounded upbeat, though, about “better and quality future engagements” between Islamabad and Washington. He said Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif, plans to travel to Washington for official talks after consulting key regional partners, including China, Russia, Iran and Turkey. “We are trying to resolve the issues amicably because any American action would cause instability in Pakistan,” the minister warned.