LONDON April 18 (APP):Minister for Interior Ahsan Iqbal Wednesday said thet government wanted to give peace and stability to the coming generations to ensure sustained economic development in the country.
He stated this while participating in Panel Discussion on Countering Violent Extremism at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office in London, on the side-lines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) 2018.
Pakistan would be happy to share its experiences of success in addressing violent extremism and terrorism, he said
and added, Extremism and terrorism could never be defeated unless there was an understanding of why and how they spread.
The other speakers included Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, UK Minister of State for the Commonwealth, the Kenyan Head of National Counter Terrorism Centre, Amb. Dr. Martin Kimani, the Nigerian Coordinator Counter Terrorism Center, Rear Admiral Yaminu Musa the Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister of Trinidad & Tobago, Stuart Richard Young MP and Mark Albon, the Head of the CVE Unit in the Commonwealth Secretary General’s Office.
While the audience including young representatives from different forums were present on the occasion.
The proceedings included the introduction of the Commonwealth P/CVE Programme to Member Countries, the announcement of the CVE Cadre of Experts, and statements presentations on UK’s approach to CVE as well as successes achieved by Pakistan, Nigeria, Kenya, and Trinidad and Tobago in addressing violent extremism.
While affirming Pakistan’s support for the cause, the interior minister observed that at a time when global challenges like climate change, terrorism, extremism, and inequalities were staring us in the face in an ever-connected world, global politics had become fractured and dysfunctional and that there was a need for collaborative and accommodative efforts, rather than finger pointing.
He stressed that any effective policy to counter violent extremism would require a comprehensive approach based on an objective and considerate understanding of both internal and external root causes of the rising extremism in the world, including unresolved international disputes, negative and stereotyping media campaigns against communities, religions and nations.
Briefing the participants about Pakistan’s journey from being the victim of terror and extremism to a victor over these menaces, he highlighted the commitment and sacrifices of Pakistani nation in the fight against terrorism.
He said, “I am proud to stand as part of Pakistani nation, which should unshakable courage and determination in defeating the terrorists.
He said Pakistan is facing legacy of Soviet war in Afghanistan alone. The western countries walked away after the Soviet withdrawal leaving behind burden of millions of refugees, drugs and Kalashnikovs. Pakistan has faced these challenges single handedly and in the process paid a big price.
Speaking of measures undertaken by Pakistan, the minister briefed the participants about the National Action Plan and the practical steps taken by the Government to counter terrorist violent extremist elements, including curbing activities of proscribed organizations through operations against militants in settled and tribal areas by destroying their infrastructure, training facilities and networks complete ban on glorification of terrorists and terrorism on Media – print, electronic and social. Steps against religious persecution, Relentless Intelligence Based Operations against sympathizers and supporters of extremism.
Crackdown against hate speeches and material through NACTA “Chaukas” App; Crack down on finances of proscribed organizations and freezing of their accounts PTA’s closure of websites of all proscribed organizations registration of cases against people involved in disseminating messages of hatred and violence and monitoring of proscribed individuals groups, and travel ban on them.
On the narrative side, he said the Government through its National Counter Extremism Policy Guidelines had formulated a comprehensive policy which looked beyond narrow concept of security and includes aspects related to rule of law and service delivery (Criminal Justice System) Citizen & Youth Engagement Media Engagement Coordinating responses beyond silos (apex committees) Community Policing, Integrated Education Reform, Reformation, Rehabilitation, Reintegration, and Renunciation, Promotion of Culture & Arts and finally, Recognizing Regional and Global Context.