Pakistan against all proxy wars: Gen Raheel
General Raheel Sharif has said Pakistan is opposed to using proxies against other countries and will also not allow any other country to use proxies against Pakistan.
The Chief of Army Staff (COAS) said this while addressing participants of a course at the National Defence University (NDU) in Islamabad on Friday, according to the military’s media wing, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).
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“The contours of future wars are fast changing. While our enemies are stoking terrorism to demoralise us and destabilise our country, we are united, fully determined and capable of defeating their nefarious designs,” the army chief was quoted by the ISPR as saying.
Islamabad has long accused its neighbouring countries of waging proxy wars on its soil through local militants and separatist elements. Pakistan’s claims proved true when in March, an Indian naval intelligence officer was caught sneaking into the restive Balochistan province from Iran.
Kulbhushan Yadav was arrested in a raid near the Pak-Afghan border town of Chaman. He later confessed to having contacts with Baloch separatists and terrorists fuelling sectarian violence inside Pakistan.
The spy’s arrest has been termed “solid proof of Indian state involvement in terrorism in Pakistan as well as in terror financing” by the Foreign Office with reports claiming his case would be presented before the international community to prove Pakistan’s stance.
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Besides Yadav, a number of Afghan intelligence agents have also been arrested from the Pakistani territory in Balochistan as well as Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa that share an almost 2,500km border with Afghanistan.
In his NDU address, the army chief focused on professional matters, internal and external security situation of the country and his vision of enduring peace within Pakistan and the region.
Gen Raheel emphasised Pakistan’s resolve and determination to confront the global phenomenon of extremism and terrorism, and cleansing Pakistan of this menace.
He said the Pakistani nation had emerged as the most resilient nation of the world from the two years of Operation Zarb-e-Azb.
He also explained how the military had transited from hardcore kinetic operations against the militants to intelligence-based operations and combing operations now. The defeated terrorists and their sympathisers at home and abroad as well are now going for softer targets, he added.
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Gen Raheel said the nation must pursue a national objective of zero tolerance for terrorists to establish peace at all costs.
Earlier on his arrival at the university, the army chief was received by NDU President Lt Gen Nazir Ahmed Butt.