Top security huddle condemns Quetta church attack

Civil and military leadership calls Trump's unilateral decision on Jerusalem 'unacceptable'

News Desk December 18, 2017
PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi chairs National Security Meeting in Islamabad on Monday. PHOTO: PID

The National Security Committee (NSC) on Monday vowed to intensify efforts for the unity and solidarity of the Muslim Ummah in view of the growing challenges.

The 16th NSC meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on Monday and attended by key government ministers as well as the three services chiefs, condemned Sunday’s church bombing in Quetta.

The meeting was attended by Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal, National Security Adviser Nasser Khan Janjua, Chairman Joint chiefs of Staff Committee General Zubair Mehmood Hayat, Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Naval Chief Admiral Zafar Mahmood Abbasi, Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Sohail Aman and senior civil and military officials.

According to a press release, the NSC condemned the terrorist attack on the Bethel Memorial Methodist Church in Quetta, terming it contrary to the fundamental tenets of peace and tolerance taught by Islam.

The foreign secretary briefed the meeting on the Extraordinary Summit and Council of Foreign Ministers Meetings of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Al Quds Al-Sharif [Jerusalem] held in Istanbul on December 13, 2017.

Nine killed, over 50 wounded in Quetta church attack

The OIC Summit was held after US President Donald Trump announced recognising Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and his administration’s plan to shift the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Observing that Trump’s decisions had created an incomprehensible situation not just for the Muslim Ummah but also for the international community, the NSC emphasised that the establishment of a sovereign Palestinian state remained a major objective of the Muslim Ummah.

“Pakistan cannot accept the unilateral decisions taken by the Trump administration. It would continue to impress upon the United States [to fulfil] its moral and political responsibility towards a just and fair resolution of the issue, and the need to revoke the steps taken,” the statement said.

The NSC also reviewed the rapidly evolving security situation in the Middle East as well as the latest developments in Pakistan’s relations with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and neighbouring Iran.

After a thorough analysis, the meeting reaffirmed that Pakistan would continue to work for the unity and solidarity of the Muslim Ummah, for which it would intensify its efforts in view of the growing challenges.

The interior secretary apprised the committee of the progress in each of the 20 areas of the National Action Plan (NAP). The NSC noted “fair progress” in the implementation of the NAP, but observed that certain areas, such as policy and institutional reform, needed more commitment and attention.

The NSC observed that as a responsible member of the international community, Pakistan would continue to fulfil its obligations under the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) framework. The NSC tasked Janjua with finalising the national security policy at the earliest.


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