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Erdogan called Mamnoon Hussain and expressed solidarity with Pakistan

04 January, 2018

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Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday called President Mamnoon Hussain and expressed solidarity with Pakistan in the wake of allegations levelled by US President Donald Trump.

The Turkish president assured his Pakistani counterpart of full support and cooperation "in any situation", a press release issued by the presidency said.

"Trump's conduct in spite of Pakistan's great sacrifices is undesirable," Erdogan was quoted as saying. He said Pakistan had rendered historic sacrifices in the war against terrorism.

President Hussain said Pakistan is a responsible country and would give an "appropriate response" to the US allegations. He said Pakistan believes in a policy of engagement and cooperation and regretted that its sentiments had not been respected.

Thanking the Turkish president for expressing solidarity with Pakistan, Hussain said, "This love-filled message has made us feel proud."

Both the presidents reiterated that Pakistan and Turkey are brotherly countries and always stood beside each other in all circumstances.

A day earlier, China too had thrown its weight behind Pakistan and said that its key regional ally has "made outstanding contributions to the international anti-terrorism cause".

In his first tweet of the new year, Trump had accused Pakistan of basing its relationship with the US on “nothing but lies and deceit”.

“They give safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help. No more!” he had said.
Worsening relations

The US president's tweet had come in the aftermath of an increasingly terse back-and-forth between Washington and Islamabad since Trump announced his administration's latest national security strategy.

During the announcement, the US president had been quick to remind Pakistan of its 'obligation' to help America "because it receives massive payments" from Washington every year.

"We have made clear to Pakistan that while we desire continued partnership, we must see decisive action against terrorist groups operating on their territory. And we make massive payments every year to Pakistan. They have to help," the US president had said.

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