Apex Committee agrees to adopt a strategy for elimination of terrorism

By Muhammad JuniadPublished On 04 Feb 2023

PESHAWAR: The Apex Committee Friday expressed determination to protect life and property of the people at every cost and make an example out of the terrorists who shed blood of Pakistanis.

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif chaired the important meeting of the Apex Committee held here at the Governor's House.

The committee assured the nation that those who attacked innocent Pakistanis, would be punished and the government would come up to its expectations.

The meeting reviewed, in detail, the incidents of terrorism, particularly the suicide attack on the mosque in Police Lines Peshawar on January 30 and its aftermath.

The officials of the intelligence agencies briefed the participants about the overall security situation and the action taken against the terrorists.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa IGP Moazzam Jah Ansari updated the meeting about the ongoing investigation into the suicide attack.

He said they had identified with the help of the videos, the method and route, used by the attacker to enter the Police Lines.

The participants prayed for the elevation of ranks of martyrs in Jannah, grant of patience and fortitude to the bereaved families, and for early recovery of the injured.

While sympathizing with the affected families, the meeting assured that the blood of the martyrs would not go waste, and the government and the nation stood with the heirs of the martyred.

The participants saluted the armed forces, Pakistan Rangers, Frontier Constabulary, Counter-Terrorism Department, police and other law enforcement agencies for their unprecedented valour against terrorism and paid tribute to the officers and soldiers who were martyred in the terror incidents.

The Apex Committee reiterated the resolve not to squander the sacrifices of the martyrs and the successes achieved so far against terrorism.

The body appealed to the media to keep up its responsible behaviour while reporting on the issue of terrorism and not to become a part of those spreading any speculations particularly on social media as any such behaviour was against national security, solidarity and unity.

The committee also reviewed the implementation of the National Action Plan and deliberated over the suggestions put forth for its improvement in accordance with contemporary needs.

The meeting also gave in-principle approval to the proposals for the upgradation of National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA), CTD and police, and the provision of training, weapons, technology and other necessary equipment to them.

It was decided that a CTD headquarters would be built immediately in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, besides establishing a forensic laboratory like the one in the Punjab province.

Moreover, on the pattern of Lahore and Islamabad, a safe city project would be initiated in KP, and the capacity building of the police and CTD would be carried out, besides providing them with the latest equipment.

The meeting reviewed the mechanisms of border management control and immigration, besides deliberating over the processes of investigations against terrorists, prosecution and their conviction.

It was decided that all the state organs would work in complete cohesion and coordination, and with utmost dedication for the elimination of terrorism and the achievement of collective national goals. Necessary legislation would also be carried out in that regard.

The Apex Committee principally agreed to adopt a united approach and strategy by the Center and the federating units for the elimination of terrorism, and directed to formulate an effective strategy for the purpose.

The meeting decided to plug in all the sources of support to the terrorists within the country and instructed to carry out an effective screening for the purpose.

The committee decided that zero tolerance for terrorism in all of its forms and manifestations would be the national objective and that all the said decisions would be implemented through a national consensus.

The participants lauded the prime minister’s decision to call an All Parties Conference and expressed the hope that the national political leadership would sit together to forge a way forward for eradication of terrorism and take decisions through consensus.

They appealed to the Ulema and religious scholars to use the pulpit for elimination of terrorism. They should inform the public about the categorical announcements of ‘Paigham-e-Pakistan’ and guidelines of religious institutions that terror attacks were sinful, and against the teachings of Holy Quran and Sunnah, and that those who shed the blood of innocent people had nothing to do with Islam.

Federal ministers Ishaq Dar, Rana Sanaullah Khan, Senator Azam Nazir Tarar, Maulana Asad Mehmood, Aminul Haq, Mufti Abdul Shakoor and Marriyum Aurangzeb, Adviser to the PM Engineer Amir Muqam, KP Governor Haji Ghulam Ali and caretaker Chief Minister Azam Khan, caretaker Punjab Chief Minister Mohsin Naqvi, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah, Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister Khalid Khurshid, Azad Jammu and Kashmir Prime Minister Tanvir Ilyas, leaders of political parties, community leaders, religious scholars, representatives of intelligence agencies and high ranking police officers attended the meeting.

Chief of Army Staff General Syed Asim Munir, chiefs of armed and civil forces, Secretary Interior, chief secretaries and inspectors general of police of all provinces, including Islamabad, AJK and GB, and the National Coordinator of National Counter Terrorism Authority were also present in the meeting.