‘No compromise’ on Pakistan’s sovereignty

President says we want peace with all our neighbours

Our Correspondent March 23, 2024


President Asif Ali Zardari on Saturday said that Pakistan was a peace-loving and responsible nuclear state but it would neither make any compromise on its sovereignty nor would tolerate any efforts of terrorists or any group aimed at destabilising it.

“Pakistan wants relations with all our neighbours. We are a peace-loving country and a responsible nuclear state. However, let me make it clear that we will not compromise on our sovereignty… We will not tolerate any efforts by terrorists or any group to destabilise our country,” the president said while addressing the Pakistan Day parade in the federal capital.

Pakistan Day is observed in remembrance of the adoption of the Lahore Resolution on March 23, 1940. This resolution, put forth by the All-India Muslim League, called for the creation of a distinct homeland for Muslims of the subcontinent.

The day started with a 31-gun salute in the federal capital and a 21-gun salute in the provincial capitals.

Besides President Asif Ali Zardari, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, federal cabinet members, services chiefs, diplomats, notables from different walks of life and a huge number of citizens attended the ceremony.

Saudi Defence Minister Prince Khalid bin Salman Al Saud, who previously served as an F-15 pilot in Royal Saudi Air Force, was the guest of honour of the ceremony.

In his address, the president said that the Pakistani nation and armed forces were always ready to respond to any aggression at all times.

“Today’s parade is a reminder of our unity, strength, and pride,” said the president who earlier reviewed the parade after arriving at the venue escorted in his chariot by the presidential guards mounted on horses.

The president congratulated the nation on the Day which commemorated the historic struggle of the Muslims of the subcontinent to achieve a separate homeland under the leadership of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. He also paid tribute to the martyrs and Ghazis with a resolve to make all-out efforts to protect national security and sovereignty.

The president’s address encompassed domestic subjects like recent elections, efforts against terrorism, economic challenges, and the establishment of SIFC, and the regional situation including the human rights abuses in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir as well as Gaza.

He told the gathering that the Kashmir dispute was the main reason for instability in the region as the people of Kashmir had been demanding their self-determination rights for the last 76 years.

Read Pakistan Day

Condemning the Indian brutalities and the human rights violations in Kashmir, President Zardari urged the international community to play its role in the implementation of the UN Security resolution. He also assured the Kashmiris that the people of Pakistan would continue standing by them till they were given their right to self-determination.

Coming to the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza, he appealed to the international community to take measures to ensure that killings of women and children was stopped and a ceasefire was declared, besides establishing a humanitarian corridor.

The president also reiterated Pakistan’s continued support for the Palestinian people till the resolution of the issue as per their aspirations.

Recounting the country’s journey marked with many ups and downs, he said despite numerous challenges, the Pakistani nation achieved distinctions in the fields of defense, agriculture and technology, besides its internationally recognised contribution to fighting against terrorism.

Highlighting the current social, political and economic challenges facing the country, he said following the successful holding of elections and the formation of a democratic government, it was the responsibility of all to seek solutions to all the issues.

“I believe that the way we faced the difficulties in the past, can steer the country out of the pervading problems even today. The Pakistani nation is hardworking and intelligent. The youth, using their mental capabilities, can guarantee a bright future,” he remarked.

President Zardari told the ceremony that the Special Investment Facilitation Council had been formed to attract investment in agriculture, livestock, mining, Information Technology and energy sectors.

He also requested all the political parties to set aside their political interests and work unitedly to bring in country’s prosperity.
The president also thanked the friendly countries including China, Saudi Arabia, Turkiye and the UAE for supporting Pakistan in the difficult times.

The parade commenced with the national anthem, the recitation of verses from the Holy Quran, after a special salute was paid to the national flag. President Asif Zardari reviewed the parade led by Parade Commander Brigadier Shahzad Ali Arshad which followed the fly-past formation of the Pakistan Air Force and the Pakistan Navy.

The contingents of the three armed forces and other security forces conducted a march while fighter planes presented aerobatic maneuvers. After the PAF fighters’ mesmerising show, Pakistan Army, PAF and Navy paratroopers demonstrated their skills with free-falls. Meanwhile, the PAF’s aerobatics display team enthralled spectators with their unmatched aerial maneuvers.



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