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Strong economy can’t be imagined in a country plagued by instability and terrorism: PM

Strong economy can’t be imagined in a country plagued by instability and terrorism: PM
June 22, 2024 Web Desk

ISLAMABAD (APP) - Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif on Saturday emphasized that the responsibility of combating terrorism lies with all federal and provincial governments, as well as institutions, underscoring the need for a collective and coordinated approach to eradicate this menace from the country.

“It is joint responsibility of all of us to enforce the state’s accountability fully and without exception,” the prime minister said, while addressing a meeting of the Apex Committee of the National Action Plan. The meeting was attended by the chief ministers of all the provinces, federal ministers and senior military officers.

The prime minister said that terrorism had plagued Pakistan in various ways for two and a half decades. “The problem of terrorism in Pakistan is very complex and there is a deadly relationship between terrorism, crime, drug trafficking, extremism and religious hatred.”

He emphasized that stability and rule of law were essential for sustainable development in Pakistan. “A soft state can never win the confidence of the investors, and a healthy and strong economy cannot be imagined in a country plagued by instability and terrorism,” he added.

The prime minister said all the institutions and provincial governments were relying solely on the Pakistan armed forces to fight against terrorism absolving themselves of any such responsibility. He said it was a dangerous trend that had been developed in last few years which would not help completely uprooting the menace of terrorism from the country.

“Pakistan’s armed forces have been shedding their blood for decades, offering unmatched and countless sacrifices,” he said, adding a sustainable stability could not be ensured without a complete system and a whole of the government.

He stressed that all the law enforcement agencies, ministries, federal and provinces governments and all the institutions should jointly work to eliminate the menace of terrorism. After the 18th amendment in the constitution, the prime minister pointed out that the provincial governments had big role in this regard as they now receive all the required resources in this regard.

“We need harmony among all the stakeholders including the political and religious leaderships to put the country on the path of peace and prosperity,” the prime minister added.

For war against terrorism, he said the political and religious leadership should be clear in their mind that this was our own war to safeguard the future of our generations. “Irrespective of all differences, we should take this responsibility and support our armed forces in this regard,” he said, adding that “putting the responsibility upon solely a single institution will be a blatant mistake”.

Besides, he stressed that an active diplomacy would also be required to take actions against the terrorist elements outside Pakistan.

The prime minister also emphasized the need for legislative action to empower law enforcement agencies, identifying the existing legal gaps as a major obstacle to effective counter-terrorism operations. He also assured the Pakistan Army and the Ministry of Interior to provide all possible resources and tools to support war against terrorism.

PM Shehbaz dismissed the ongoing campaign against the Pak-China relations as a baseless and malicious social media-driven dirty campaign designed to destabilize the country. He said the Chinese leadership had counter this campaign through their statements which showed how they gave importance to their relationship with Pakistan.