Pakistan has threatened to drop US as a supplier of military aircraft if Washington tries to downgrade its relationship with Islamabad.
Pakistan currently buys F-16 fighters and it would like to buy more F-16s, but we do have other options. We have a long relationship with both the French and the Chinese, and we have been developing the JF-17 alongside the Chinese, which in many ways meets or even exceeds the specifications of the F-16, Pakistan’s new Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi was quoted as saying in an interview with Financial Times on Sunday.
The US Donald Trump administration in August criticised Islamabad for providing safe havens to terrorists. The US had even hinted at imposing sanctions on Pakistani officials having links with militants.
Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi had warned last Monday that any targeted sanctions against Pakistani officials would not help in US counter-terrorism efforts. Pakistan in this context has started looking out for regional support in the wake of scathing remarks from Trump.
The Express Tribune reported that Pakistan has been in contact with two veto-wielding powers - China and Russia - who have opposed the American policy of putting undue pressure on Pakistan.