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Pakistan at 'critical juncture': COAS

COAS says national consensus by all stakeholders required to deal with challenges of economy and terrorism

By Zarmeen Zehra
December 31, 2022
COAS General Asim Munir speaks during an address at the Pakistan Naval Academy in Karachi on December 31, 2022. — ISPR
COAS General Asim Munir speaks during an address at the Pakistan Naval Academy in Karachi on December 31, 2022. — ISPR

Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Saturday called for a national consensus to defeat terrorism as he noted that the country is passing through one of its "most critical junctures".

The statement by the army chief comes as the country is witnessing a spike in terrorist activities, especially in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan, after the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) ended its ceasefire with Islamabad.

"Pakistan is passing through one of her most critical junctures, and this requires the development of national consensus by all stakeholders to sail through the confronted challenges of economy and terrorism," the COAS said, addressing a ceremony at the Pakistan Naval Academy in Karachi.

In a statement, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said army chief was the chief guest at the Commissioning Parade of 118th Midshipmen and 26th Short Service Commission held at the academy. Upon arrival, the military's head was received by Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Muhammad Amjad Khan Niazi.

Gen Munir congratulated the commissioning term for the successful completion of training and becoming guardians of the maritime frontiers of Pakistan.

Addressing the parade, he said: "Maritime domain is continuously shifting, mainly due to technological advancement, herein only those navies would prevail and prove effective that would align with professionalism and modern trends of warfare."

The COAS appreciated the academy for imparting quality education not only to Pakistani cadets but to the cadets of Pakistan's friendly countries. The army chief advised young officers as future leaders to lead by their conduct, character, professional acumen and foresight.

The army chief gave awards to prize winners during which the prestigious Quaid-i-Azam Gold Medal was awarded to Lt Kashif Abdul Quyyom PN for his Overall Best Performance, while Midshipman Naufil Malik was awarded the coveted Sword of Honour for his overall best performance.

The army chief, later, visited the Malir Garrison where he laid a floral wreath at Martyr’s Monument.

At the occasion, he addressed the officers of Karachi Corps, Rangers and other CAFs at the garrison.

COAS underscored the need for focus on the profession and demands of modern warfare and directed information operations.

'Nation stands against terrorism'

In its annual report released today, the Center for Research and Security Studies (CRSS), said Pakistan saw as many as 376 terror attacks in the last year, resulting in increased casualties in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Balochistan provinces.

For the past few weeks, Pakistan has witnessed a fresh wave of terrorism with the most recent spate of terror attacks carried out in Balochistan and KP.

In response, Pakistan Army's top brass Wednesday resolved to uproot terrorism "without any distinction" as the country battles a fresh wave of insurgency, which has left many soldiers martyred and several others injured.

The National Security Committee (NSC) had also, a day earlier, decided to turn up the heat on the militancy with relentless counter and preemptory measures to neutralise the threats present in the country in any form.

"Terrorists are Pakistan’s enemies and the entire nation is united on the single narrative of standing against terrorism," the NSC participants were quoted as saying according to a statement from the PM's Office.