Our vision is peaceful Pakistan and peaceful region: COAS Gen Baja

Islamabad: Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General Qamar Javed Bajwa interacted with notables of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) including senators, members of National Assembly, businessmen, lawyers, academia and others at Peshawar. The COAS shared his candid thoughts about security environment, achievements in the war against terrorism, challenges and way forward, said a statement issued here by Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

The COAS said that lately, “We as a nation have successfully passed through some very difficult times of fighting extremism and terrorism but still much is left to be done.”

He hailed the courage and resilience of the people of Pakistan, especially of FATA and KP being major victim of terrorism and said that Pakistan army fully supported socio-economic development in affected areas. He said that this was the time to unitedly keep moving forward towards enduring peace and stability.

Talking about issues related to check posts and unexploded ordnance etc, he said that measures to facilitate general public at check posts without compromising security and clearance of unexploded ordnance were already in process on completion of kinetic operations. No one is more interested than security forces to have such peace and stability environment which allow their complete de-induction.

However, threat is still residing across the border and some disorganised residual potential including the ones morphed into Afghan refugees. Therefore, we still need to move with caution, he added.

He said that notwithstanding the genuine problems of the peaceful citizens, Pakistan’s concern was that no anti-state agenda in the garb of engineered protests etc. aimed at reversing the gains achieved at heavy cost in blood and national exchequer succeeds.

He said that the security of innocent citizens and defence of motherland comes first and foremost. He reiterated that long term dividend of peace was linked to earliest mainstreaming of FATA.

The audience also interacted with COAS and expressed their views candidly. They acknowledged contributions and sacrifices of security forces and desired that Pakistan continued to progress on positive trajectory of peace and prosperity.

The COAS assured the notables that Pakistan Army, as part of state, was determined to root out extremism and terrorism on the premise that prerogative of use of force rests with state alone. Our vision is peaceful Pakistan and peaceful region and our efforts are geared towards that end, he said. Commander Peshawar Corps and field commanders were also present on the occasion.

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