Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif has said the whole nation has rejected the ‘misplaced ideology’ of terrorists, who, according to him, have lost their cause already and are being marginalised.
The army chief made these remarks during a visit to field formations deployed in South Waziristan on Tuesday, said a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).
His visit came against the backdrop of Pakistan Army’s recent surgical strikes, in which over 80 suspected militants were killed in North Waziristan Agency.
The army carried out massive air strikes against the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) after government’s efforts to strike a peace deal with the militant group through dialogue made little progress.
Speaking to troops fighting militancy in the lawless regions bordering Afghanistan, General Raheel appreciated the determination and steadfastness of the security forces and local tribesmen.
He commended their professional commitment and paid rich tributes to forces for their sacrifices in bringing peace and normalcy to the troubled regions. He reiterated Pakistan Army’s continued wholehearted support for tribal ‘brethren under all circumstances’.
The ISPR said the army chief reviewed the progress of mega and micro projects of socio-economic significance, undertaken by the army, and appreciated them for quality of work and timely completion.
He particularly mentioned the construction of Central Trade Corridor, a 714-kilometre road network, linking Pakistan’s Indus Highway and Waziristan agencies with the Afghan Ring Road.
The project, he pointed out, is already beginning to bring great economic dividends to the residents of the region.
General Raheel visited other community development schemes in health, education, water and power projects, as part of successful programmes for rehabilitation of the people.
He also visited the recently established Cadet College Spinkai Raghzai and lauded the college administration for the standard of education and administration being maintained, said the ISPR statement.
Talking to cadets, he said the education projects completed by the army would go a long way to groom a new generation of young Pakistanis from such remote areas and integrate them in the national mainstream.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 28th, 2014.
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