Terrorists on run because of successful security operation : Ahsan Iqbal

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ISLAMABAD, Jan 23 (APP):Minister for Interior Ahsan Iqbal Tuesday said the successful operation of Pakistan’s security forces had weakened networks of terrorists, who were on the run.
“We made the National Action Plan (NAP) and launched a full-fledged operation against terrorists in the country, which will continue till complete annihilation of terrorists and extremists,” he said.
The Minister was addressing a passing-out ceremony of new Counter-Terrorism Force (CTF) here at Islamabad Police Line.
Ahsan Iqbal lauded the role of nation, Pakistan’s armed forces, police and other law enforcement agencies (LEAs) in the war against terrorism and said besides sacrificing thousands of precious lives, the country’s economy also suffered loss of more than US $ 100 billion.
“Peace is very much important for development as is oxygen necessary for human life,” he said and added that the societies having instability and insurgency could not meet the pace of progress.”
He said police were not only doing their own duty but also playing a vital role in the country’s development. It were the police, who performed their duty day and night so that citizens could sleep without any fear, he added.
Congratulating the CTF on completion of its training, Ahsan Iqbal said he was pleased that women had also become part of the force. Women, he added, were also playing an active role in fighting against terrorism.
The minister said selection of the CTF personnel was made on merit, who were imparted training by the army to keep them abreast with modern needs.
He said an anti-riot police force had also been formed to ensure law and order in Islamabad.
Ahsan Iqbal said terrorism was a common enemy of Pakistan and the United States. Pakistan, he added, had rendered unprecedented sacrifices in the war against terrorism and its valiant forces had broken the back of terrorists. As to what the United States had done for Pakistan-based millions of Afghan refugees, he questioned.
The minister said Pakistan wanted lasting peace in the region in collaboration with its international partners. It was the biggest stakeholder of peace in Afghanistan as it would be first country to reap the dividends of Afghan peace, he added.
Ahsan Iqbal was of the view that it was an age of innovation where changes took place frequently, and “we need to develop ourselves as per requirements of the world because nature of today’s challenges is global and challenges have no boundaries.”
He said the country’s economy was weak in the year 2013 when no one was ready to invest there, but now it was making progress. All economic indicators now were showing positive improvements, he added.
He mentioned that power generation had been enhanced only up to 16000 MW from 1947 to 2013, but the present government has added 10000 MW power to national grid to meet growing needs.
Earlier, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Islamabad Sultan Azam Temuri said an action plan was being prepared to improve performance of the police within minimum time.
He said of the total 970 personnel of CTF, first batch of 380 had passed out. They were imparted training by the SSG officers.
The IGP said 21 vehicles had been arranged for the CTF while the remaining 22 would be delivered soon.
Later, Ahsan Iqbal witnessed the parade as well as live demonstration of CTF snipers. The CTF’s logo was also awarded to the minister.