Army’s accountability procedure can streamline civilian system: Asif Ghaffor

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BY M. Sarwar
LONDON: Director General, Inter Services Public Relation (ISPR), Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor has said that Britain has reiterated its full support for the security and stability of Pakistan. British Army Chief Sir Nicholas Carter gave this assurance to Gen Bajwa during a meeting in London on Wednesday while acknowledging Pakistan’s ongoing struggle against terrorism and militancy.

Addressing a press briefing at the Pakistan High Commission here on Saturday, he said that Gen Bajwa categorically told Mr. Gareth Baley, (UK’s Special Representative for Pakistan and Afghanistan) that peace in Pakistan and Afghanistan is inter-linked. “After fencing the complete (2612 km) border, Pakistan will reduce the number of check posts and there would be only one main gate for crossing the border with valid documents. Thus the illegal use of border would be stopped. With these precautionary arrangements, the terror attacks have been minimised”.

Referring the country’s situation, Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor said that Pakistan Army has absolutely no role in the ongoing anti-corruption and accountability drive. Army believes that democracy is the only way forward and as an institution, Pakistan Army has provided full support to democratic institutions. “We will work to make sure that democracy continues in Pakistan.” Army and judiciary are behind the government and not after any individual.

He emphasised that all problems would be resolved if the model of accountability in Army is adopted in civil system. English judiciary system should be applied in Pakistan.

He said that Pakistan’s relations with its neighbouring countries are satisfactory. Many large countries of the world shy away from sitting down with each other to talk their issues out. Pakistan is the only country that meets and talks with all countries including India, China, Afghanistan, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

As far as India’s threat of surgical strike is concerned, it should be cleared to everyone that “if India dares to launch a surgical strike inside Pakistan, it will face ten surgical strikes in response”. No other countries should have any doubts about Pakistan’s capability to defend itself.

He clarified that Army did not send Gen ® Pervez Musharraf out of the country, it was the political government that allowed him to leave the country, and that the army had no role in it. He is abroad as former president of Pakistan and not as Army chief.

Referring the Kashmir issue, Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor said that Kashmiris should be given their right of self-determination. Now third generation has involved in struggle and this movement is in their DNA. That day is not far when they would be successful in their just movement. Our national policy is to support their struggle, morally and politically. This struggle would take U-turn as it is indigenous and political struggle. We want dialogue and the war is the result of failure of negotiations. Kashmiris are fighting for their survival.

DG-ISPR said that KPK is the biggest victim of terrorism due to its long border link with Afghanistan. The demands of PTN are right. Manzoor Pashtoon is our brother, we have to deal with them with affectionate and love. We know the forces which are supporting them against the integrity of Pakistan.

Replying a question on Kulbhushan Jadhav case, he said that we have all proofs in hand against him. We can hang him today but we are waiting for ICJ deliberation due on 18th February 2019 though its decision is not binding force for us. He has been sentenced to death by our military court and not civilian. ICJ has no jurisdiction to convert capital punishment to any other term. It has not done so in the past.

He denied a hand in forming the PTI Government and said that Pak Army is protecting the CPEC projects which are vital for the prosperity and stability of Pakistan. Now, Pak Army is quite different with the previous army.