Pakistan will not be pressured by US on nuclear policy strategy: Khawaja Asif

DAVOS: Pakistan creates it nuclear policy independently and will neither develop nor change it on the orders of the United States, Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif told media in Switzerland.

Asif is in Davos, Switzerland, for the annual session of the World Economic Forum (WEF).

The minister said that Pakistan reserves the right to its defence and will not be “influenced” by the US.

It has neither bowed down to pressure from the US in the past nor does it intend to do now, Asif added, referring to the country’s strategic policies.

Asif’s comments come amid tensions between the United States and Pakistan, which have only marginally subsided since Donald Trump’s tirade against Pakistan prompted a strong response from the latter.

The US has long blamed militant safe-havens in Pakistan for prolonging the war in neighbouring Afghanistan, giving insurgents a place to plot attacks and rebuild their forces.

In December in a report outlining its national security strategy underlining the country’s interests and objectives worldwide, the US said the prospect for an Indo-Pakistani military conflict that could lead to a nuclear exchange remains a key concern requiring consistent diplomatic attention, besides preventing nuclear weapons, technology, and materials from falling into the hands of terrorists.

“The US will also encourage Pakistan to continue demonstrating that it is a responsible steward of its nuclear assets,” the report added.