For a country that has received over $ 40 billion in aid from the United States and been part of numerous American alliances and treaties, Pakistan’s leaders insistence on asserting their independence is remarkably consistent.
During Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s recent trip to the US he spoke about terrorism being the greatest threatto his country. Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif has repeatedly stated that Pakistan will fight terrorism.
Pakistan has been an ally in the global war against terrorism since 2001 and of the security assistance Pakistan receives from the US a large section comprises Coalition Support Funds that is reimbursement to Pakistan for assisting the international and US troops in Afghanistan.
And yet in a recent statement Pakistan’s Minister for Interior Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan stated that Pakistan was not accountable to the United States in the war against terrorism. “We are not accountable to the US. We are very clear about what we are going to do and what we are doing is in the interest of Pakistan, which lies in the fact that we must do everything to eliminate all kinds of terrorism. Terrorist of all kinds and colors will be eliminated from the soil of Pakistan.”
Mr Khan also dismissively asserted that Daesh or ISIS (Islamic State) does not have any presence in Pakistan, contrary to reports filed by its own agencies. According to Mr Khan, “On the issue of Daesh, it is a Middle Eastern outfit. No Middle Eastern outfit with the name of Daesh exists in Pakistan, but certain local terrorist organizations may be seeking inspiration or may be having some kind of interaction with Daesh. But this terrorist group as a Middle Eastern organization has no footprint in Pakistan.”