ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Friday that war with India was not an option, but that it would respond with “full force” to any attempt to challenge its sovereignty.
The National Security Committee “stressed the fact that both countries are aware of each other’s capabilities. War is not an option,” the prime minister’s office said in a statement after chairing a committee meeting.
“It is shared responsibility of the leadership of both countries to immediately defuse the situation,” it said.
“The committee expressed the resolve that any attempt to challenge Pakistan’s territorial integrity and sovereignty will be responded with full force. The Armed Forces assured the National Security Committee that they are fully prepared to deal with any adversity at our borders,” the statement added.
Further, during the meeting the premier condemned ‘unprovoked’ firing by India across the border.
Addressing the escalation of border clashes between India and Pakistan, Nawaz said Pakistan’s desire for peace should not be misunderstood and called upon India to immediately honour the sanctity of the Line of Control (LoC) and working boundary and halt firing for durable peace, Express News reported.
“Pakistan has replied befittingly to India’s violation of the ceasefire,” he said.
The premier also deplored the loss of lives on Pakistan’s side as a result of Indian firing.
Further, the top military leadership briefed the meeting’s participants about the latest situation along the LoC and working boundary and clarified that Pakistani forces are only firing in defence and not targeting civilian areas.
Terming his visit to Miramshah a moving experience, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said he was thrilled to see what the armed forces have achieved so far in the ongoing Operation Zarb-e-Azb against foreign and local militants in North Waziristan.
Mentioning his meeting with the officers and soldiers fighting in the operation Nawaz said, “They have fought very bravely in the area and cleared all of North Waziristan area.”
“We saw a mosque which was used for brainwashing young minds, rooms where people were trained for terrorism and weapon depots,” he said, as he narrated his experience.
Paying rich tribute to those fighting terrorists in the agency, the premier said the terrorists have paid a heavy price for the operation.
PM Nawaz also extended his condolences to the families of the deceased soldiers and offered government assistance.
The meeting was attended by Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Adviser to PM on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz and senior military officials.
Earlier, the chief of army staff, naval chief and Advisor on Foreign Affairs separately met with the prime minister and discussed matters pertaining to national security.