close
Advertisement
Can't connect right now! retry

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!
March 21, 2014

No intention to send troops anywhere: Nawaz

National

March 21, 2014

MIANWALI: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday categorically denied that Saudi Arabia and Bahrain had requested Pakistan to send its troops somewhere.
Talking to reporters following a ceremony to rename the Mianwali Airbase M M Alam Airbase after the legendary fighter pilot of the 1965 war here, Nawaz Sharif said that in the midst of grave challenges, the leadership had to take a strict and prompt decision.
He said the government was not considering any proposal to send troops anywhere.The PM’s statement came after rumours that dignitaries from Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, during their recent visit to Pakistan had requested Pakistan to send troops for possible assistance to rebels in Syria.
“There is no such request before us for consideration,” the PM told reporters.He said the visit of the King of Bahrain was in the interest of Pakistan. He said the recent visit of the Saudi crown prince also reflected that Pakistan’s foreign policy was moving in the right direction.
Nawaz said Pakistan was not part of the arms race in the region; however, he stressed that it would not be oblivious to its defence and sovereignty at the cost of pursuing a peace strategy. “Being peaceful does not mean withdrawing from the right to independence. We have to defend our political, economic and cultural sovereignty,” the PM said.
The PM emphasised that Pakistan did not harbour aggressive designs against any other country. “Our government is clear on this issue. A strong Pakistan with a strong armed forces guarantees regional peace,” he said.
The PM said every necessary step would be taken to strengthen the country’s armed forces including its air force and navy. He mentioned a Quranic verse which signifies making ready the horses against enemies, and said its connotation in today’s world is to equip the armed forces with best weaponry and advanced professional training of troops.
He said the countries of South Asia must consider the plight of

their more than one billion population, most of which were living below poverty line.Nawaz Sharif urged the leadership of South Asia to shun joining the arms race and instead fight against the social evils of poverty, illiteracy and diseases.
Nawaz said Pakistan’s history was replete with the great heroes who always kept ahead the country’s integrity before their lives. He said amongst these national stalwarts were the names whose bravery was acknowledged across the borders as well.
He mentioned Air Commodore Muhammad Mehmood Alam who was a pride of the Pakistan Air Force and expressed confidence that other personnel of the PAF must be ready to follow the same spirit of bravery.
Nawaz Sharif also launched, on the occasion, a memorial postage stamp of M M Alam by Pakistan Post.Earlier, the PM was received by Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt on his arrival at the airbase. Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Rashid Mehmood was also present.Federal Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Minister for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage Pervaiz Rashid and others were also present.