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American Friends of Balochistan welcomes Trump's statement on Pak

ANI | Updated: Jan 02, 2018 15:19 IST

Washington DC [USA], Jan 2 (ANI): The American Friends of Balochistan (AFB) Executive Committee has welcomed United States President Donald Trump's stance on Pakistan, calling it a vindication of its own viewpoint.

Trump began 20018 with an angry tweet aimed at Pakistan calling it out for providing safe havens to terrorists and criticising it for "lies and deceit".

The AFB executive committee, in a statement, said the US remained Pakistan's top foreign aid donor, in addition to the money paid in expectation of cooperation in the global war on terror.

"Yet, for many years now, serving officers in the US Armed Forces have repeatedly spoken out about Pakistan's perfidy in Afghanistan, which has cost America lives, money and strategic credibility in the world's eyes. Pakistan also remains a training ground for terrorism and a prime proliferator of nuclear weapons technology," the statement said.

It further said, "No country's development and democracy have suffered more from Pakistan's interference via state-sponsored terrorism than Afghanistan. The US' efforts to help the Afghans rebuild their nation are constantly sabotaged by reeling instability. India is another well-known target."

The statement added that Balochistan had seen several bloody cycles of insurgency ever since Pakistan forcibly annexed the autonomous Baloch province of Kalat in 1948.

"A portion of historical Balochistan also sits on the other side of Pakistan's border with Iran. Further, it borders Afghanistan to the north-west. Pakistan's brutal record in this strategically located province has spiked in recent years. The AFB monitors the situation in Balochistan closely and is in touch with freedom and democracy activists on the ground," it said.

The AFB executive committee reiterated their call to the Pakistani government to cease violating the physical security of Baloch people, their freedom of expression, and end the policy of economic exploitation and genocidal violence.

The AFB executive committee chimed in with similar sentiments expressed by the policy experts in academia, veteran politicians, diplomats, intelligence chiefs, and human rights activists. Among them were former Afghan President Hamid Karzai, leading South Asia expert and former Pakistani ambassador Hussain Haqqani, several Baloch freedom and human rights activists cutting across party lines, former head of Afghanistan's Directorate of Security Amrullah Saleh, and even normally fierce critics of Trump's administration such as Prof Christine Fair, Provost's distinguished Associate Professor Georgetown University's Edmund A Walsh School of Foreign Service.

The AFB executive committee consists of Najeeb Khan, Krishna Gudipati, Soumya Chowdhury and Habiba Ashna.

Earlier on Day One of 2018, Trump had tweeted: "The United States has foolishly given Pakistan more than USD 33 billion dollars in aid over the last 15 years, and they have given us nothing but lies & deceit, thinking of our leaders as fools. They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!"

The tweet was loved by nearly quarter-million Americans and retweeted 83,000 times in less than 24 hours. (ANI)