Use of force to be last option in Balochistan: Mamnoon

Published April 8, 2014
President Mamnoon Hussain. — File photo
President Mamnoon Hussain. — File photo

QUETTA: President of Pakistan Mamnoon Hussain on Tuesday underlined the need for negotiated settlement of issues relating to Balochistan.

Addressing members of Balochistan Cabinet, the president stated that the government was striving to pave the way for dialogue with disgruntled Baloch leaders.

He said that all out efforts were being made to find an amicable solution of issues relating to Balochistan, a volatile province which is Pakistan's least developed.

"Use of force would be last option in Balochistan," the president told cabinet members while giving assurance that restoration of peace through political means was the government's first priority.

The president's visit has come at a time when Balochistan has seen an increase in incidents of violence.

Mamnoon Hussain stated that the government was determined to bring Balochistan at par with the rest of the country in terms of social development.

He directed the concerned quarters to double the efforts for development and prosperity in the province.

Talking to Awami National Party's delegation, the president expressed serious concern over continued missing of Arbab Abdul Zahir Kasi.

Kasi was kidnapped by armed militants from Patel Road area of Quetta in October 2013.

Mamnoon Hussain assured that delegation that Kasi's name would be included in the exchange list with Taliban.

"We would include his name in the exchange list," the president told the ANP delegation.

Earlier the president was briefed about the law and order situation and development projects in Balochistan in Governor's House.

The president has arrived on a two day visit to Quetta to meet political leaders and tribal elites.

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