Gordon Brown proposes security plan for schools in Pakistan

Published: February 17, 2015
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The proposed measures include installing security fences, metal detectors, armed guards, better communication systems. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD IQBAL/EXPRESS

The proposed measures include installing security fences, metal detectors, armed guards, better communication systems. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD IQBAL/EXPRESS

The proposed measures include installing security fences, metal detectors, armed guards, better communication systems. PHOTO: MUHAMMAD IQBAL/EXPRESS Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who is the UN Special Envoy for Global Education. PHOTO: AFP

United Nations Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown on Tuesday proposed a foolproof security plan for provision of better safety measures in the schools of Pakistan, BBC reported.

The former British prime minister held talks with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif about making schools safer after the Peshawar school massacre that killed over 140 pupils and staff members.

The proposed measures included installing security fences, metal detectors, armed guards and using emergency communication systems. Brown said he wanted to help schools stand up to terrorist violence.

The proposals follow an agreement between the UN envoy and PM Nawaz to improve the safety of schools in the country. In the past five years, there have been more than a thousand attacks on schools in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhawa.

Peace zones

Brown has been promoting a plan for safe schools drawn up by education charity, World at School, drawing upon the best practice being used in parts of Pakistan or in conflict zones in other countries.

It calls for the creation of peace zones around schools, negotiated with local community and religious leaders. There are proposals for a more systematic approach to security, including boundary walls. security checkpoints and razor wire. It calls for armed guards on vantage points such as rooftops and tighter vetting checks on security staff. It also warns of concerns over school transport and calls for buses to be checked every day for explosive devices.

If schools are attacked, the report said there must be a way of rapidly calling for assistance and alerting other schools.

Education under attack

There were also suggestions that small schools in isolated areas could be brought together into places where they could be better protected or moved to areas of greater safety. Brown called upon the international community to fund the security improvements. He said such measures to make schools safer will reassure parents and pupils that everything is being done to counter extremist threats.

A spokesperson for PM Nawaz reiterated his personal commitment to working with the UN envoy to improve the security of children in school.

Later this year, Brown is expected to support international proposals to give schools and places of education a protected status during military operations. There have been rising levels of deliberate attacks on schools and colleges in other countries, including by Boko Haram extremists in Nigeria.

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Reader Comments (11)

  • Feb 17, 2015 - 11:11AM

    The sooner a security plan is implemented for schools, the whole society will breathe a sigh of relief. SalamsRecommend

  • Ashraf al Makhlooq
    Feb 17, 2015 - 11:11AM

    SubhanAllah !Recommend

  • John
    Feb 17, 2015 - 12:12PM

    Pakistan, being a so-called nuclear power is never shy in getting the had outs and aid from the foreign governments and organisations. Worse still is that so much of it is eaten away by corruption and inefficiency/poor management. I could only hope in the interest of Pakistani children that this aid comes through and it is used in the right way.Recommend

  • Fawad
    Feb 17, 2015 - 12:48PM

    First they will have to build boundary walls:

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/838948/no-boundary-walls-over-70-schools-vulnerable/

    Brown’s recommendations are fanciful at best.Recommend

  • Burki
    Feb 17, 2015 - 12:51PM

    Utter shame that foreign entities are more concerned and have to come up with ideas/plans to install better security measures in schools in Pakistan while the government is twiddling its thumbs – PM busy holding those for-show meetings just for the cameras. Around 2 months after Peshawar carnage, has the Sharif government provided ANY concrete plans to improve security for common people?Recommend

  • Feroz
    Feb 17, 2015 - 1:15PM

    Excellent proposal Sir, but who will pay for it ?Recommend

  • Abdullah
    Feb 17, 2015 - 2:10PM

    The best security plan is that Gordon Brown and all other who are invading Pakistan and Muslim countries to leave and let us live in peace with what ever belief we have.Recommend

  • Ashwin
    Feb 17, 2015 - 2:36PM

    @Feroz: “Who will pay for it?”
    The people who trained and armed them.Recommend

  • Pakistani
    Feb 17, 2015 - 4:08PM

    Thank you Mr Gordon Brown for trying to help.

    We appreciate it a lot.Recommend

  • Aeronaut
    Feb 17, 2015 - 7:15PM

    Do not put cages around innocent people. How many bubbles of security will you make? Finish terrorists, arrest and mute every terrorist sympathiser, give exemplary punishments to those guilty of terrorism, close the madrassas that have proven to be making and assisting terrorists, make sure banned organizations are not just banned, but behind bars, muted, away from civilization. And you will not need to put us and our children in cages in the name of security. Recommend

  • woody
    Feb 17, 2015 - 7:43PM

    @Abdullah:

    The best security plan is that Gordon
    Brown and all other who are invading
    Pakistan and Muslim countries to leave
    and let us live in peace with what
    ever belief we have.

    Seems like Gordon Brown cares more about Pakistani kids than you do. The people who are slaughtering your kids are Pakistani Muslim not Western infidels.Recommend

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