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Operation in NWA a well-thought-out decision: Khwaja Asif

16 June, 2014

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ISLAMABAD: Defence Minister, Khwaja Asif Sunday termed the launch of a full scale military operation 'Zarb-e-Azb' against the terrorists in North Waziristan Agency a well-thought-out decision of the government.

"It is a decision of the entire nation," the Defence Minister said following the formal announcement of the operation launch by Director General Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

Khwaja Asif said the Pak Army has been directed to crush the terrorists completely. "The Pak Army will not spare any sacrifice for the defence and security of the country," he said.

He said all the political parties have thrown their weight behind Pak Army in the operation against terrorists.

The Defence Minister said that a major military operation was the need of the hour but stopped short of giving details of the operation, saying the details cannot be made public at this stage.

However, he said the operation would continue till the surrender or elimination of the enemy. He said that the government tried its level best to resolve the crisis by dialogue. "We were frustrated with attacks on the innocent Pakistanis and the damage caused to national assets," he added.

He said the terrorists exploited government's desire to bring peace through dialogue and instead took it as government's weakness. He said the launch of the operation was a well-thought-out decision by the government.

"The government considered all pros and cons before announcing a decisive military operation against the terrorists," he said, and added, "We are ready for retaliation and blowback from the terrorists."

Meanwhile, Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Pervaiz Rashid on Sunday appealed to politicians and the whole nation to stand united behind the government and the armed forces in the war against terrorism.

In his statement after the launch of military operation in North Waziristan, the minister said that as a democratic government, they have exercised the option of dialogue with the terrorists but contrary to the peace overtures they continued killing our people.

"But now either they will have to surrender or face the defeat," he maintained. The minister stressed upon the nation to stand united behind the men and women in uniform. "Pakistani nation has decided that those who want to disrupt their life will be taken to task," he added. He said this terror network would now meet its fate with the ultimate might of the state, adding "They know that people of Pakistan are peace-loving and will defend their way of life."

He said the government continued to consider the option of military operation during the peace talks spanning six months as a last resort in case the dialogue process fails. "The decision of military offensive is nation's collective desire for peace."

End.

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