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February 17, 2017

Each drop of nation’s blood to be avenged: COAS

Top Story

February 17, 2017

Says terrorists trying to regroup in safe havens in Afghanistan; army, Rangers reach blast site in Sehwan Sharif; Pak-Afghan border closed over security concerns

ISLAMABAD: Following the seventh suicide attack within five days, Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa has declared that there will be no more restraint for anyone and each drop of nation’s blood shall be avenged.

“Each drop of nation’s blood shall be revenged, and revenged immediately. No more restraint for anyone,” General Bajwa said in a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

The army chief appealed to the nation to stay calm. “Your security forces shall not allow hostile powers to succeed. We stand for our nation,” he said.The COAS directed the Pakistan Army and Rangers for providing immediate assistance to the Sehwan Sharif blast victims.

Meanwhile, Director General ISPR Major General Asif Ghafoor said that recent terrorist acts are being executed on directions from hostile powers and from sanctuaries in Afghanistan. “We shall defend and respond,” he said.

“The Army and Rangers had moved including medical support (to Sehwan Sharif),” Asif Ghafoor tweeted.

The Combined Military Hospital (CMH) at Hyderabad was ready to receive the casualties, he added.The DG ISPR in another tweet said the Pakistan-Afghanistan border has been closed with immediate effect till further orders due to security reasons.

Earlier, General Bajwa visited Mohmand and Bajaur agencies.The army chief met with the troops and had interaction with tribal elders. He also met the kins of those who embraced martyrdom during Wednesday’sterrorist attack at Ghallanai and offered respects and condolences.

General Bajwa lauded the law enforcement agencies in Mohmand Agency, especially Levies, for thwarting Wednesday’s suicide attack, minimising the loss of lives. He also appreciated the troops for effectively responding to cross border attack from Afghanistan on a Pakistani post last week. He said that cooperation among the brave citizens, army, LEAs and intelligence agencies is the cornerstone of success against terrorism. He said terrorists are trying to regroup in safe havens in Afghanistan and are attempting to spread doubt and despondency in our society.

“We all collectively shall fail their desperate manoeuvres,” he said, adding, “Efforts to ensure that our soil is not used against any other country shall continue and we will expect from others to reciprocate in same manner.”

The army chief said hostile agencies should avoid playing with regional peace and stability “as we reserve the right to respond, despite our current policy of restraint”.He assured the local tribes that the Pakistan Army will continue its efforts to improve infrastructure in Fata including roads, health, education and community development projects. “Army fully supports initiatives for mainstreaming of Fata being undertaken in accordance with the wishes of the people,” the COAS said.

Commander Peshawar Corps Lieutenant General Nazir Ahmed Butt and other senior army and FC officials were also present at the occasion.

Our Landikotal correspondent adds: The Pakistani authorities closed the border with Afghanistan at Torkham late Thursday night due to security reasons, sources in the security forces said.

Sources told The News that neither vehicles nor pedestrians would be allowed to cross the border. No timeline was given as to how long the busy Pak-Afghan border at Torkham would remain closed. However, sources said the closure orders would remain in force until any new announcement. People intending to come to Torkham were asked not to do as the border had been shut down.

The step was taken following the spate of terrorist attacks in Pakistan in recent days and in the aftermath of the claim by Pakistan’s civil and military leadership that the acts of terrorism were planned in Afghanistan and carried out by Afghanistan-based Pakistani militants.


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