Army won’t go back till job is done: COAS
ISLAMABAD: Army chief General Raheel Sharif has said that terrorists will not be allowed to stage a comeback in the tribal regions as he reassured tribesmen that the “army will not go back until the job is fully done”.
Thousands of tribesmen displaced by Operation Zarb-e-Azb in North Waziristan have started returning to the areas purged of terrorists. The repatriation and resettlement of these tribesmen, who have officially been designated as temporarily displaced persons (TDPs), will be completed by the end of this year.
Zarb-e-Azb: Army chief lauds nation’s support
“Our focus within Fata (Federally Administered Tribal Areas) will now be on more efficient border management to prevent cross-border movement. For enduring stability, IBOs [intelligence-based operations] and combing operations will continue with same vigor across the country,” Gen Raheel said during a visit to forward locations in North and South Waziristan agencies on Tuesday.
The army chief spent the whole day with tribesmen and troops busy in the consolidation phase of Operation Zarb-e-Azb which was launched in mid-June 2014 to indiscriminately flush out local terrorists and their foreign cohorts.
The army chief was given a detailed briefing on ongoing operations and rehabilitation work and its effects on the social landscape of the area, according to a statement issued by the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR).
While acknowledging the exceptional achievements, courage, determination and sacrifices of the troops in achieving operational gains, Gen Raheel said Zarb-e-Azb was launched against terrorists of all hues and colours, and their sanctuaries had been dismantled without discrimination.
“Operation Zarb-e-Azb is in its final stage in the fewer left-out pockets,” he said, adding that the army with the support of the entire nation had achieved unparalleled successes in the fight against terrorism.
Operation Zarb-e-Azb : Shawal Valley– a tale of tough battles
He also inaugurated multiple projects as a part of the post-operation comprehensive rehabilitation plan for Fata. These projects include the 72-kilometre-long Miramshah-Razmak-Makeen dual carriage road as part of the 705-kilometre central trade corridor. The newly constructed road by the Frontier Works Organisation will considerably reduce travel time between North and South Waziristan agencies.
The army chief also commissioned the state-of-the-art 100-bed Sheikha Fatima Binte Mubarak Hospital at Sholam, in South Waziristan. He said Fata’s development was a priority task being undertaken by the army as a comprehensive plan.
“These projects will improve the quality of life in the tribal areas, usher a new era of economic prosperity, and address the problem of militancy on a long-term basis,” he said.
According to the ISPR, Pakistan Army has so far undertaken 567 projects in the social, communication, infrastructure and power sectors in Waziristan.
General Raheel appreciated the support of the tribal brethren in combating terrorism and acknowledged their sacrifices. He assured them that terrorists would never be allowed to return to the region and the army would not go back till the job was fully done.