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Govt, military worried over non-conviction of terrorists

18 July, 2014

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ISLAMABAD: The government and military on Thursday expressed concern over the lack of conviction of terrorists, which they noted is affecting the efforts in the war against terrorism.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday visited the General Headquarters of the Pakistan Army to get an update on the progress in the operation Zarb-e-Azb and to pay his respects at the Yadgar-e-Shuhada.

According to the PM House spokesperson, the prime minister, who was accompanied by Minister for Defence Khawaja Asif, Interior Minister Nisar Ali Khan, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz and Special Assistant on Foreign Affairs Tariq Fatmi, was briefed on operational matters by senior military officials.

The prime minister is in touch with the senior military leadership since the launch of the operation Zarb-e-Azb and is being regularly updated on the successes in the operation.Inter Services Intelligence Director General Lt Gen Zaheerul Islam Janjua and Military Operations DG Maj Gen Aamir Riaz briefed the PM on successes achieved in the military action.

According to them, more than 450 terrorists have been killed since Zarb-e-Azb's launch on June 15, while 26 security personnel have lost their lives. Miranshah has been fully cleared of the terrorists and security forces have started a ground offensive in Mirali, which would be cleared in few days.

The military commanders said the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan's (TTP's) major command and control centres and arms and ammunition depots in Miranshah, Shawal and other areas have been destroyed. Prime Minister Nawaz was received by Chief of Army Staff on his arrival at the GHQ. He visited the martyrs' monument, laid a floral wreath and offered Fateha there.

Later the prime minister and the federal ministers were briefed by the DGMO on the progress of operation Zarb-e-Azb. PM Nawaz showed great satisfaction over the progress and said that the armed forces are achieving the intended objectives at the desired pace. He said that the whole nation is behind the troops, who are fighting this battle for peace and stability in our country.

PM Nawaz said that operation is meant to establish writ of the state. "Chase of terrorists by armed forces and other law enforcement agencies and intelligence apparatus will continue until their annihilation," the prime minister added. The meeting noted with concern that there is an issue of effectively prosecuting terrorists in the courts of law and terrorists are not getting convicted, which has a negative impact on armed forces' efforts in the war on terror.

It was agreed that the forces will get full legal backing. PM Nawaz appreciated Pakistan Army for providing security to the Chinese workers working on different projects all around Pakistan. He said that the army will be fully equipped and provided all requisite resources to fight this war. He directed that damage assessment of the area should also be carried out for better and planned resource allocation for effective reconstruction and rehabilitation.

Nawaz said that NADRA should fast track verification process by employing additional manpower and equipment in Bannu. Prime Minister Nawaz also held a meeting with the COAS General Raheel Sharif and lauded the sacrifices the Pakistan Army was rendering for the country.

End.

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