Monday February 26, 2024

COAS vows to break 'terrorist-facilitator nexus'

On visit to Pakistan-Afghanistan border, COAS says army will consolidate the hard-earned peace

December 23, 2022

The army is determined to bring peace to the country and break the terrorist-facilitator nexus, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Syed Asim Munir said Friday.

The army chief's comments came during his visit to the Pakistan-Afghanistan border in Miranshah, North Waziristan, according to Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

The army chief, as he interacted with the troops stationed at the border, said the military remains focused on evolving security situations and is determined "to take the battle to the terrorists and break nexus with their facilitators"

"Pakistan Army will consolidate the hard-earned peace, made possible by the supreme sacrifices of resilient Pakistani nation and LEAs (law enforcement agencies)," the COAS said.

During the visit, field commanders briefed Gen Munir on the latest security situation in the area and response mechanisms to thwart the terrorist threat, according to the ISPR.

"COAS also visited frontline troops deployed along Pakistan-Afghanistan Border. While interacting with officers and men, COAS commended their professionalism, high morale and operational readiness," the ISPR said.

Later, the army chief also visited the headquarters of the Special Services Group (SSG) in Terbela, where he met the elite "Zarrar Company" whose soldiers gallantly acted in the recent Bannu Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) complex operation as well as aviation.

The army chief praised their indomitable spirit, sacrifices, and commitment to duty in various operations and said that SSG is the pride of the nation and it had "proved its metal over the years".

The operation

Militants overpowered a counterterrorism department centre in Bannu and took personnel hostage last Sunday. The situation continued for three days as the authorities tried to negotiate with the militants.

However, on Tuesday, the facility was later cleared by the Pakistan Army's SSG and as a result, 25 terrorists were killed, two arrested, and seven surrendered.

Three soldiers — Subedar Major Khursheed Akram, Sepoy Saeed and Sepoy Babar — were martyred on the same day of the operation, and another soldier — Haleem Khan — embraced martyrdom a day earlier.

The law and order situation in KP has gone south over the last few weeks as an increase has been noticed in threats and attacks on security forces and high-profile political personalities after the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) announced ending the ceasefire with Islamabad.

But the government and the armed forces have made it clear that the terrorists would be dealt with "iron hands".