ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Friday reviewed the arrangements for the multi-party conference aimed at evolving consensus on a counter-terrorism strategy as well as the law and order situation in Karachi.
The interior minister apprised the prime minister on contacting political leaders for the conference which has been called for Sept 9. Prime Minister Sharif gave special directives to Nisar that all political parties should be offered representation at Monday’s conference which will discuss contours of the draft counter-terrorism strategy.
The conference will also seek views of political leaders on whether to go for dialogue or use state’s power to curb terrorism.
Nisar is reported to have contacted Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly Syed Khurshid Shah, Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) leader Dr Farooq Sattar, Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam - Fazl (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) Amir Munawar Hasan and leaders of other parties.
Khan who had earlier decided to boycott such a conference has reportedly agreed to attend it.
Nisar also briefed Prime Minister Sharif on the law and order situation in Karachi.
During Friday’s meeting, the prime minister said improved coordination between intelligence bodies and law enforcement agencies was imperative to combat crime in the country's financial capital.
The prime minister moreover said his government would do its utmost to ensure peace in Karachi and would not offer any leniency to criminal elements.
The briefing came a day after the federal cabinet empowered Rangers to lead a targeted operation in the city with the support of police against criminals already identified by federal military and civilian agencies in hundreds of lists for their alleged involvement in targeted killings, kidnappings for ransom, extortion and terrorism.
Karachi is home to multiple conflicts that frequently turn violent, including gang wars and ethnic and political rivalries. Militants are said to use the city as a hiding place and a source of funds obtained through bank heists, extortion and kidnapping for ransom.