China and Russia have assured Pakistan at the diplomatic level that they would veto any US move in the United Nations to slap economic sanctions on Islamabad over failure to eliminate terror safe havens, according to a media report today.
The ties between Pakistan and the US deteriorated after US President Donald Trump in August criticised Islamabad for providing safe havens to terrorists.
The Express Tribune and its sister publication Daily Express reported that the US has hinted at imposing sanctions on Pakistani officials allegedly having links with militants.
Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi had warned on Monday that any targeted sanctions against Pakistani officials would not help in US counter-terrorism efforts.
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.
The two key world players have assured Islamabad of every possible support at all forums, it said.
Pakistan would also approach other Western nations, especially France and the United Kingdom, to drive home its viewpoint, according to report.
Islamabad-based diplomatic sources told Daily Express that foreign policy wizards, security officials and top government functionaries have been brainstorming to chart out new policy vis-a-vis Washington.
It has been decided that Pakistan would phase out its dependence on the United States. And high-level contacts with Washington would be restored only after the Trump administration acquiesced to assuage Pakistan's legitimate concerns on the new US strategy for Afghanistan and beyond.
There has been no top level contact between Trump's aides and Pakistani officials since the inauguration of the new US strategy, though US Ambassador David Hale has met senior Pakistani civil and military leaders in an attempt to soothe frayed tempers in Islamabad.
Pakistan has started approaching key international and regional players to garner their support in the wake of scathing criticism from President Trump.
In this context, Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif has already launched a diplomatic offensive to garner support for Pakistan. He travelled to China, Iran and Turkey this week.
(With PTI inputs)