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US responds to S Jaishankar’s “You’re not fooling anybody” remark on F-16 fighter jets deal with Pak

“We look to both as partners, because we do have in many cases shared values. We do have in many cases shared interests”

Ayushi Sikarwar

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New Delhi: A day after S Jaishankar, the Minister of External Affairs raised questions about the intentions behind providing Pakistan with the F-16 security assistance, the US has come up with a balanced response.

Ned Price, the State Department Spokesperson told the media during a press conference on Monday, “We don’t view our relationship with Pakistan, and on the other hand, we don’t view our relationship with India as in relation to one another. These are both partners of ours with different points of emphasis in each”.

“We look to both as partners, because we do have in many cases shared values. We do have in many cases shared interests. And the relationship we have with India stands on its own. The relationship we have with Pakistan stands on its own”, he added.

Ned Price

For the not known, reversing the previous Trump government’s decision to suspend Islamabad’s military aid, the Biden administration approved an F-16 fighter jet fleet programme worth USD 450 million for the nation.

Earlier, raising concerns over the US-Pakistan relationship, Jaishankar said, “It’s a relationship that has neither ended up serving Pakistan well nor serving the American interests. It’s really for the United States today to reflect on the merits of this relationship and what they get by it”.

Referring to the F-16 security assistance, he further said, “For someone to say I am doing this because it is all counter-terrorism content and so when you are talking of an aircraft like a capability of an F-16 where everybody knows, you know where they are deployed and their use. You are not fooling anybody by saying these things”.

 

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