LONDON: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar has said terrorism is a global issue and coordinated efforts at international level are needed to curb the menace.
He said this while speaking at the International Institute of Strategic Studies in London on Tuesday.
Nisar said the West should refrain from imposing any solution to handle terrorism in South Asia, adding that terrorism has its own reasons and dimensions in different regions. “International focus and cooperation, however, must continue to eliminate the scourge,” he said.
The minister said Muslims were the worst -affected by terrorism and the West should take them on board while adopting a regional approach. He said Islam has nothing to do with terrorism and linking militancy with the great religion is unfortunate.
Talking about the challenges faced by Pakistan, he said the country had repeatedly faced security dilemma, not because of faults within but because of regional factors. “The issue basically started in 1979 when the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan,” he said.
He said after the 9/11 attacks the entire burden was put on Pakistan alone and then the country took the decision to fight terrorism. “It (9/11) was a sad incident, but whoever was responsible for it, had no connection with Pakistan,” he added.
The minister said during the era of General Pervez Musharraf, six to seven suicide attacks used to occur daily while the country had no security policy.
“The present government, however, has evolved a counter-terrorism policy with national consensus as terror incidents have declined by 38% with casualties decreasing by 40% last year,” he added.
Meanwhile, the interior minister met his British counterpart Theresa May and called for tapping into the existing potential of cooperation between the two countries. Ongoing cooperation between the investigation agencies of the two countries in money laundering cases and Dr Imran Farooq murder case also came under discussion.
It was agreed that the investigation agencies from the two countries will visit each other’s country to carry forward the investigation in an independent and transparent manner and in line with the respective laws of the two countries.
Expressing satisfaction over the state of relations between Pakistan and the United Kingdom, the interior minister also underscored the need for taking bilateral relationship a notch higher by enhancing mutual cooperation in all possible areas.
The British home secretary underlined the importance of regular exchange of views on security cooperation and other areas.
At the outset, British official expressed her condolences over the loss of precious lives as a result of March 27 terrorist attack in Lahore.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 27th, 2016.
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