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January 13, 2018

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Now Pak Army is quite different from past: DG ISPR

ISLAMABAD: Director General, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Asif Ghafoor, on Friday said that Pakistan’s present army from a soldier to the general was different from that of the past.

“Today there is no such soldier or general who has not fought this war (against terrorism) physically. “All the corps commanders have physically participated in this combat. They have fought with weapons in their hands,” he said in response to a question during an exclusive interview with a private TV channel.

He was asked whether the today’s corps commanders were different from those of General Musharraf’s time. “Such kind of mindset where you have firsthand experience of war is very different as compared to the army which did not fight such a war,” he said.

He said that the motivation and planning for such a war was done accordingly. Pakistan, he said, had been facing challenges since 1947 as all the hostile powers, especially the perpetual threat of India, worked against it.

“Despite all these things, Pakistan is heading towards peace. All this shows that Pakistanis are a resilient nation. Its (Pakistani nation’s) power and potential basis are very strong, and if we take these positively in right direction, I think Pakistan’s destiny is peace and progress,” he added.

Emphasising the need for ensuring security and stability in Afghanistan, Major General Asif Ghafoor said that lasting peace in the region was linked with the situation in Afghanistan. He said before the Afghan war, there was no terrorism in Pakistan adding, “Our target is to take Pakistan to that pre-war peaceful era.”

He said that peace had returned to Pakistan and now its future was prosperous. To a question regarding US President Trump’s statement about Pakistan, he said that the reaction on his statement was a national feeling.

He said that the International Security Assistance Force (Isaf) could never have been able to defeat al-Qaeda in Afghanistan without Pakistan support. He said Pakistan provided Isaf with all the necessary logistic and intelligence support to overcome terrorism in Afghanistan.

He said though Pakistan had less resources, it achieved what the security forces in Afghanistan could not get with all of their resources. DG ISPR said that Indian forces committed highest number of ceasefire violations in 2017 as compared to past years.

He said that various operations, undertaken by Pakistan Army against the terrorists were different in nature. Giving example of the ongoing Operation Raddul Fasaad, he said under it intelligence based operations (IBOs) were being carried out adding that an IBO might take weeks and months to get materialised.

To a question regarding fifth war generation, he said physically the war had ended, but the present stage was difficult adding. “In this phase, we are fighting an enemy which is not seen. We’ve to track down and eliminate this unseen enemy,” he said.

He said the fifth generation warfare was targeting minds of people through technology. Regarding Balochistan, he said it was 46 percent of Pakistan’s geography. “We have been fighting in Fata but Balochisan is very vast. Hostile intelligence agencies started operating there when we were busy in Fata,” he said.

He said through Khushhal Pakistan project, situation would improve in Balochistan. He said Iran wanted stability in Pakistan and it had started fencing critical points along Pak-Iran border.

To another query, he said that Pakistan’s defence cooperation with Russia had increased recently. Replying to a question about China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), he said besides Pakistan’s economic development it was also in the benefit of entire region.

Major General Asif Ghafoor said that military diplomacy among different countries continued but it depended on foreign diplomacy adding that a better foreign diplomacy help improve military diplomacy. He said that National Action Plan was a comprehensive plan and its all points should be implemented for better results.

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