ISLAMABAD: Federal Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Sunday said the terror threat in Pakistan required great vigilance on the part of each citizen as “the sympathisers and supporters of these terrorists live among us.”
Lambasting propaganda and justifications for the attack on the Peshawar school, Nisar said the Pakistan Army had never targeted women and children.
“The Pakistan Army is highly responsible and disciplined,” Nisar said.
“Even Osama bin laden’s family was sent back to their countries in a dignified manner,” he added.
Speaking at a press conference today, the interior minister said the people of Pakistan had been dealing with the threat of terrorism for many years now, but even greater unity was needed at this time.
“To fight terror, every Pakistani citizen has to play their part,’ said the interior minister.
He urged all citizens to be vigilant with regards to the terror threat.
“I welcome the strong condemnation of the terrorists by the country’s Ulema,” he said, adding that, in this environment, madressas must not become a hot bed of extremism”.
The interior minister did however claim that 90 per cent of madressas had no connection to terrorism, "based on intelligence reports received".
The interior minister also called on the media to play a responsible role, requesting that individuals who espouse hatred and bloodshed should not be given a platform to spread their message.
“This is exactly what these terrorists want, a medium for their hatred to be heard, the media must black out their message,” the interior minister pleaded.
Nisar also said that mobile phone SIMs play a very big role in terrorist attacks that are carried out.
“In the Peshawar attack, five SIMs were issued by a private company that helped to facilitate the attack.
"We will see what action can be taken and whether an FIR can be lodged against the company," he said.
The interior minister said that the fight against terrorism will be a long hard struggle.
“We must not let our guard down; this will be a long and difficult struggle,” he said.
“Don’t think of this as a game which will be over fairly shortly… Sri Lanka fought against terrorism for several years,” Nisar said.
“When you are in a state of war, difficulties have to be endured, we must be prepared for any eventuality,” the interior minister told the press conference.