COAS asks Taliban to live up to foreign commitments

Gen Qamar warns army will not remain silent on attempts to criticise Pakistan


APP August 20, 2021

RAWALPINDI:

Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa warned on Friday the army would not remain silent to attempts to criticise Pakistan, stressing that “conspirators and spoilers” were the ones who had been an obstacle to regional peace.

Addressing the faculty and cadets during a visit to the Pakistan Military Academy (PMA) in Kakul, Gen Qamar Bajwa reiterated that Pakistan wanted national and regional peace and development, and would continue to play its role for peace and stability in Afghanistan.

The army chief visited the PMA where he reviewed the flag-presentation parade as the chief guest, while awarding the Battalion Standard to 4th Pakistan Battalion, which was raised on 10th of October 2016, said an Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) media release.

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On the occasion, the COAS delivered and important policy speech, covering challenges and opportunities. He dilated on the status of Pakistan in the comity of nations, and nation’s struggle and sacrifices with reference to the month of anniversary of the country’s independence.

The army chief said that peace in Afghanistan was essential to the region, especially to the people of Afghanistan. “We will continue to play our role for peace and stability in Afghanistan,” he said. “Pakistan wants national and regional peace and development.”

Speaking in the context of the latest Afghan situation, the army chief said: “We expect the Taliban to live up to the promises made to the international community of women and human rights and that Afghan soil will not be used against any other country.”

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The chief of army staff noted that Pakistan had paid a heavy price for the unrest in Afghanistan. Despite its economic woes, he added, Pakistan had sheltered more than 3 million Afghan refugees for four decades.

“Pakistan’s sincere efforts in the Afghanistan peace process are for the establishment of a region that is a peaceful, prosperous and economic partner,” he said. “We have consistently made it clear to the international community that it must play a role in finding a peaceful solution to Afghanistan.”

Future challenges

In his address, the COAS lauded PMA’s role as the premier training institution of the Pakistan army and commended the faculty and staff for maintaining high standards of training and grooming the young leaders that formed backbone of the army.

“Today is an important milestone in the development and evolution of a great institution like the Pakistan Military Academy. The 4th Pakistan Battalion has shown excellent performance since its inception five years ago,” he underlined.

Dilating upon future challenges in the view of changing dynamics of warfare, the COAS advised the cadets to wholeheartedly focus on training and remain abreast with the latest advancements in technology to prove equal to the task.

He said the Pakistan army was proud of its young officers, who continued to lead their men from the front with courage and devotion to defend the freedom of motherland. He added that the hardworking youth were the pride and capital of the nation.

“Your commitment to dedicate yourself to your homeland is a symbol of fear in the hearts of Pakistan’s enemies,” he said, addressing the cadets. “The guiding principles of faith, unity and discipline in all the challenges of life are a beacon for you.”

The month of August, he continued, “reminds us of the eternal sacrifices and historic struggle of our forefathers for freedom”. He added that despite economic and other difficulties after independence, Pakistan not only overcame them but after every challenge it emerged stronger and stronger.

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“No power in the world can harm a united nation in any way,” he said. “We overcame terrorism and fully defended the borders. Whether it was a conventional war or a response against terrorism, emergency or natural calamities, Pakistan’s armed forces must always live up to the nation’s trust.”

In this month of independence, the army chief said: “We cannot forget our Kashmiri brothers. The people of Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir [IIOJK] are the victims of the worst state terrorism and exploitation.”

He said that the hearts of Pakistanis beat with the Kashmiris. “We have always stood by Kashmir and will continue to do so. The international community must realise that regional peace is an illusion until a peaceful and just resolution of Kashmir issue.”

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