Donald Trump has been widely mocked for his choice of words during a conversation with Pakistan’s prime minister - but the exchange was odd for more than one reason.
The president-elect described Nawaz Sharif as a “terrific guy” and said he would “love to come to a fantastic country, fantastic place of fantastic people”.
He also described the people of Pakistan as “amazing” and “one of the most intelligent people”.
In case you missed it, here’s a write-up of precisely what Trump said during his conversation with Sharif:
Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif called President-elect USA Donald Trump and felicitated him on his victory. President Trump said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif you have a very good reputation. You are a terrific guy. You are doing amazing work which is visible in every way. I am looking forward to see you soon. As I am talking to you Prime Minister, I feel I am talking to a person I have known for long. Your country is amazing with tremendous opportunities. Pakistanis are one of the most intelligent people. I am ready and willing to play any role that you want me to play to address and find solutions to the outstanding problems. It will be an honour and I will personally do it. Feel free to call me any time even before 20th January that is before I assume my office.
On being invited to visit Pakistan by the Prime Minister, Mr. Trump said that he would love to come to a fantastic country, fantastic place of fantastic people. Please convey to the Pakistani people that they are amazing and all Pakistanis I have known are exceptional people, said Mr. Donald Trump.
This is from a man who said he wanted to ban almost all Muslims from entering the US.
Pakistan’s population is 96.4% Muslim, according to the CIA’s World Factbook.
Relations between the US and Pakistan have been tense in the past.
Reuters reported that although Pakistan continues to receive aid as well as military funding and training from the United States, the US Congress has recently held back some help due to frustrations about Pakistan’s unwillingness to act against elements of the Afghan Taliban.
Relations hit new lows in May when a US drone killed Mullah Akhtar Mansour, the leader of the Afghan Taliban movement, on Pakistani territory.
Indeed Trump himself didn’t seem to be a great fan of the country in the past...
According to Reuters, Trump also has business ties in India, which has stoked concerns in Pakistan that under his presidency the United States may accelerate its shift towards New Delhi.