RAWALPINDI: Pakistan Army supports democracy and doesn't consider necessary to respond to rumours, Director General Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Asim Bajwa said at a press briefing on Friday.

Army has clearly extended its support for supremacy of the Constitution, he said, adding that Army Chief General Raheel Sharif, in his address on Youm-i-Shuhuda, clearly said that the army believes in continuation of democracy in the country.

Ruling out any connection with the ongoing ‘political activity’ in the federal capital, the DG ISPR said the army had reaffirmed its support to democracy.

Maj-Gen Bajwa also disclosed that a 10-member militant group known as 'Shura' linked to attack on Malala Yousafzai, has been tracked down and arrested through a joint operation carried out with coordination of intelligence agencies, army and police.

He said suspect Israrul Rehman was the first arrest in the Malala Yousafzai case, adding that information gathered from Rehman led to the apprehending of the others.

“A furniture shop owner Zafar Iqbal was its head and he was a supporter of Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) chief Mullah Fazlullah,” said the Army spokesman.

During the interrogation, militants admitted that Fazullah made the plan to attack the naval dockyard in Karachi, Bajwa told reporters.

“They also admitted that if they did not get caught, they would have attacked at least 21 more people. They have also killed a security guard of a university in Swat. They will be presented before an ATC.”

Commenting on the progress of Operation Zarb-i-Azb in North Waziristan, Bajwa said that the military offensive was progressing well as over 2,200 intelligence operations have been conducted and 134 'hardcore terrorists' were arrested so far.

He said the army will continue to target the militants by working in close coordination with the civil administration.

Speaking about security of Islamabad's Red Zone, Maj-Gen Bajwa said the Pakistan Army had been entrusted with the responsibility to protect five buildings, which did not include the Pakistan Television (PTV) network headquarters. However, he added that when protesters stormed into the building, the channel's administration called in the army and the latter responded immediately.

“Rumours should be confirmed before spreading,” Bajwa said. “If there is need for a clarification, army can be contacted through ISPR and we will respond accordingly.”

Separately, he said that the army is a united and cohesive organisation, adding that integrity and unity were its biggest assets.

“Everyone is allowed to discuss their opinions in a free and frank manner but the army chief’s decision is considered final and troops follow his lead.”

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