Sharif calls for action against seminaries backing terrorism

Published February 19, 2015
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.—AP/File
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.—AP/File

QUETTA: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has directed the provincial governments to implement the National Action Plan (NAP) and take stern action against terrorist organisations and proceed speedily on those death penalty cases in which mercy petitions have been rejected.

Presiding over a meeting of the Balochistan Apex Committee held here on Wednesday, he said religious seminaries and organisations involved in terrorist activities should be identified and proceeded against. No terrorist or militant organisation should be spared.

Also read: NAP objectives have to be met: PM

The meeting was attended by Army Chief General Raheel Sharif, Balochistan Governor Mohammad Khan Achakzai, Chief Minister Dr Abdul Malik Baloch, Defence Minister Khawaja Mohammad Asif, ISI Director General Lt Gen Rizwan Akhtar, federal ministers Khawaja Saad Rafeeq and Jam Mohammad Kamal, Commander Southern Command Lt Gen Nasser Khan Janjua, Senior Minister and PML-N’s Balochistan President Sardar Sanaullah Zehri, Home Minister Mir Sarfarz Bugti, former prime minister Mir Zafarullah Jamali, Chief Secretary Saifullah Chattha, Home Secretary Mohammad Akbar Durrani, Balochistan Inspector General Mohammad Amlish Khan and Frontier Corps (Balochistan) IG Maj Gen Shair Afghan.

The prime minister stressed that terrorism must be dealt with sternly and militant and terrorist organisations which were not ready to hold peace talks with the government would have to face action.

“No one will be allowed to wage insurgency and commit violence under the patronage of sectarian and other organisations,” he said, adding that his government was committed to implementing NAP and eradicating terrorism and extremism.

Referring to the implementation of the action plan in Balochistan, he said the federal government and the army would fully support the provincial government in its efforts to rid the province of terrorists and extremists. Durable peace in the province is one of the objectives of the plan.

Mr Sharif asked all provincial governments to take steps for capacity building of police and other law-enforcement agencies. “The federal government has been providing funds to all the provinces, including Balochistan, for the purpose so that their police and law-enforcement agencies could play an effective role in the war against terrorism,” he said. The provincial governments would have to pay special attention to law and order and free law-enforcement forces of political interference.

He said the strength of counter-terrorism departments should be increased to enable them to effectively deal with the menace of terrorism.

“We will have to take tough decisions to achieve the objectives of the National Action Plan,” he said, adding that there should be no compromise in its implementation.

The prime minister said his government and the army were on the same page and working jointly to root out terrorism. “Civil and military leadership and all political parties had been taken on board while formulating the NAP,” he said. Elements out to destroy peace will not be allowed to continue their violent activities.

He claimed that efforts by the federal and Balochistan governments had controlled target killings and attacks on the Hazara community had been reduced. He directed the authorities to provide security and protection to communities facing sectarian violence.

The prime minister said the parliament had amended the Army Act to make the National Action Plan more effective.

Chief Minister Malik Baloch and Chief Secretary Saifullah Chattha briefed the meeting on measures being taken to implement the action plan in Balochistan.

They said that a number of steps had been taken against militant and terrorist groups under the plan. About 80,000 unverified mobile phone Sims have been blocked over the past few days.

Published in Dawn, February 19th, 2015

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