COAS commitment

US Ambassador David Hale has thanked Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa for his commitment of not allowing militants use Pakistan’s soil to conduct attacks against any country, specifically Afghanistan. In a meeting with Hale in Islamabad on Monday, both the COAS and the US ambassador reiterated their nations’ commitment to a secure, stable and prosperous Afghanistan.
It is appreciable that Pakistan and the United States are holding regular consultations on Afghan problem and regional security situation brightening prospects for a better understanding of each other’s point of view and timely removing misunderstanding, if any. What the Army Chief has conveyed to the American Ambassador is not rhetoric but is also corroborated by ground realities. Pakistan Army initiated a whole hog operation against all sorts of terrorists and has successfully eliminated major and organised threats not only to Pakistan but also to Afghanistan. Stray incidents of terrorism in Afghanistan cannot and should not be blamed on Pakistan as has become a practice with leaders of Afghan government. The tribal areas are treacherous and it is next to impossible to ensure hundred percent combing and that too in the entire region simultaneously, leaving possibilities for movement of terrorists from one area to another. Pakistan cannot afford to provide the so-called safe havens to terrorists for carrying out activities against Afghanistan as safety, security, peace and stability of the two countries is intertwined. Pakistan is pursuing an ambitious developmental agenda aimed at bringing backward and far-flung areas of the country especially FATA at par with other regions and it is understandable that success of this mission is deeply linked to peace and tranquillity. Therefore, one must not doubt Islamabad’s intentions about peace in Afghanistan. It is, however, to be pointed out that peace would not come to Afghanistan until and unless all stakeholders demonstrate their sincerity for realisation of this objective. Those who accuse Pakistan of sponsoring terrorism are themselves opposing peace moves and the option of dialogue for restoration of peace in Afghanistan, an objective avowedly pursued by Pakistan. The emphasis on use of force and ignoring safe havens on Afghan soil that are used for terrorist activities against Pakistan is bound to keep the pot boiling.

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