MULTAN / RAWALPINDI: Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa has said that war against terrorism and militancy is not over yet.

The army chief’s remarks came during a visit to Multan Garrison on Friday where he witnessed training demonstration on combat readiness by an armour formation of the strike corps.

During his visit, the army chief interacted with officers of Multan Garrison and shared his thoughts on the security situation of the country, challenges and the response, the ISPR added.

“After kinetic operations, we are now into the phase of stability operations. War against terrorism and militancy is not over yet,” the ISPR quoted the army chief as saying. “Besides kinetic efforts we have to take on measures to address the root causes while staying cognisant of inimical forces and foreign hostile agendas,” he added.

Gen Bajwa said that within the folds of national action plan, the country should support national focus on socioeconomic development so that the people of Pakistan reaped dividends of improving security.

He said some elements were wittingly or unwittingly trying to pull the country back into confrontation. “The State shall not let them do it whether on the name of religion, ethnicity or any other pretext,” he said, adding that peace, stability and progress of the country was contingent upon rule of law by all.

Meanwhile, the army chief confirmed death sentences awarded to 11 hardcore terrorists, who were involved in heinous offences related to terrorism.

According to the ISPR, the terrorists were involved in attacking armed forces, law enforcement agencies, killing of an innocent civilian and destruction of an educational institution.

The convicted terrorists, it said, were involved in the killings of a total of 26 people — one civilian and 25 armed forces/security personnel — and injuring 22 others. Arms and explosives were also recovered from their possession.

According to the ISPR, these convicts were members of proscribed organisations. They were tried by special military courts and were awarded death sentences. The courts also handed down imprisonment to 22 convicts.

Details of conviction provided by the ISPR are as follows:

Anwar Salam was involved in an attack on the armed forces which resulted in the death of Major Ziaul Haq, Subedar Ali Asghar, Havildar Muhammad Afzal, Havildar Muhammad Bashir and Lance Naik Muhammad Anwaiz.

He was also found involved in the kidnapping of Lt Col (retired) Khaqan Afzal for ransom. The convict confessed to his crimes before a judicial magistrate and the trial court, which sentenced him to death.

Irfanul Haq was involved in abetting terrorist commander Mufti Meraj Uddin in the kidnapping of Capt Najam Riaz Raja and Capt Jonaid Khan along with two soldiers. The officers/soldiers were later slaughtered by the terrorists.

He was also found in possession of explosives. The convict was awarded death sentence after he confessed to his offences before a judicial magistrate and the trial court.

Sahibzada was found involved in attacks on armed forces/law enforcement agencies personnel, which resulted in the death of Naib Subedar Muhammad Hanif along with four soldiers, a civilian and injuries to eight others. He was also involved in destruction of Government Primary School, Langar (Swat). In addition, he was found in possession of firearms/explosives as well.

The convict confessed to his offences before a judicial magistrate and the trial court. He was awarded the death sentence.

Nadir Khan, Izat Khan and Imtiaz Ahmed were involved in attacks on armed forces personnel, resulting in the death of a junior commissioned officer along with two soldiers and injuries to two others.

They were also found in possession of firearms and explosives. These convicts were sentenced to death after they confessed before a judicial magistrate and the trial court.

Ameer Zeb and Badshah Iraq were involved in attacks on armed forces/law enforcement agencies personnel, which resulted in the death of three soldiers and injuries to nine others.

Arms and explosives were also recovered from their possession. The convict confessed to their offences before a judicial magistrate and the trial court. They were awarded the death sentence.

Izhar Ahmed was involved in attacks on law enforcement agencies, which resulted in the death of Constable Ayub Khan and Constable Islam Gul. He was also found in possession of explosives.

He was sentenced to death after he confessed before a judicial magistrate and the trial court.

Akbar Ali was involved in attacks on armed forces personnel, which resulted in the death of Sepoy Asif Mehmood and injuries to an officer and two soldiers. He was also found in possession of explosives.

The convict confessed to his crimes before a judicial magistrate and the trial court. He was awarded death sentence.

Mohammad Imran was found involved in attacks on law enforcement agencies, which resulted in the death of a soldier. He was also found in possession of firearms.

He was sentenced to death after confessing to the offences before a judicial magistrate and the trial court.

Published in Dawn, November 24th, 2018

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