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Monday 19 Nov 2018 12.25 PM

Trump defends military aid cut to Pakistan : Pak doesn't do 'a damn thing' for US: Trump

Trump, Pakistan

President Donald Trump on Sunday defended his administration's decision to stop hundreds of millions of dollars in military aid to Pakistan, saying the country does not do "a damn thing" for the US and its government had helped Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden hide near its garrison city. Referring to Laden and his former compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, Trump in an interview to Fox News said, "You know, living think of this living in Pakistan, beautifully in Pakistan in what I guess they considered a nice mansion, I don't know, I've seen nicer."

The compound was demolished shortly after US Naval Special Warfare Development Group forces, in a daring helicopter raid, killed Laden there in 2011. "But living in Pakistan right next to the military academy, everybody in Pakistan knew he was there," he added. "And we give Pakistan USD 1.3 billion a year. ... (Laden] lived in Pakistan, we're supporting Pakistan, we're giving them USD 1.3 billion a year -- which we don't give them anymore, by the way, I ended it because they don't do anything for us, they don't do a damn thing for us," he said.

The ties between the two countries strained after Trump, while announcing his Afghanistan and South Asia policy in August last year, hit out at Pakistan for providing safe havens to "agents of chaos" that kill Americans in Afghanistan and warned Islamabad that it has "much to lose" by harbouring terrorists. In September, the Trump administration cancelled USD 300 million in military aid to Islamabad for not doing enough against terror groups active on its soil. PTI

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