IN the backdrop of repeated assertions made both by the civilian and the military leadership to address the issue of terrorism and extremism in a comprehensive manner, terrorists struck a mosque inside the Police Lines area of Peshawar killing at least 44 people and injuring 157 others.
The outlawed Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility for the dastardly act, which was condemned strongly by all segments of the society and leaders of the civilized world.
It is quite evident that police personnel and their families were the targets of the attack and the police chief himself acknowledged the security lapse that led to the tragedy.
However, it is also a fact that it is almost next to impossible to ensure the level of security and gadgets required to make lives and property safer because of the resource constraints and the nature of the threat.
Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and his close aides rushed to Peshawar to have firsthand knowledge of the grave situation and expressed solidarity with the families of the victims.
The PM chaired a meeting and gave directions for in-depth investigation which would surely highlight different aspects of the incident but condemnation, investigation and arrest of suspects are unlikely to resolve a problem that requires an all out war to eliminate the threat once for all.
It is known to all not only in Pakistan but also elsewhere in the world that the country launched a successful operation against the menace of terrorism but its eradication needed sincere cooperation from influential and resourceful members of the international community.
It is, however, regrettable that after withdrawal of the coalition forces from Afghanistan, Pakistan has been left alone to deal with the threat which is resurfacing because of numerous vulnerabilities of the country.
Given the financial and economic crisis, Pakistan is unable to divert necessary resources for counter-terrorism campaign and as a result terrorists are re-grouping and posing greater threat with the passage of time.
The renewed threat will have repercussions for the entire region and beyond and therefore, the international community is duty bound to extend moral, political and strategic cooperation to Pakistan to effectively address the terrorist threat.
It is also time Pakistan reviews its Afghan policy and makes the Taliban realise to abandon their support for terrorists enjoying safe heavens in Afghanistan.