RAWALPINDI, (Pakistan Point News - APP -26th Sep,2016) : Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif reached Germany on a one day official visit to participate in a conference of armed forces chiefs being held under auspices of US CENTCOM. According to an Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) press release issued here Monday, besides the host General Joseph Votel, Commander US CENTCOM, army chiefs of Pakistan, Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, are participating in the conference.
The participants expressed their desire to improve multilateral military cooperation amongst their countries, in order to coherently meet the emerging security challenges and jointly defeat the menace of terrorism comprehensively. Gen Raheel Sharif, in his address at the forum, highlighted the regional security environment, common challenges and way forward for the participating countries. He said that Pakistan's counter terrorism efforts had turned the tide against terrorism in the country.
Pakistan, he added, was the biggest victim of terrorism, both in terms of human lives and finances. Elaborating the concept and success of the operation Zarb-e-Azb, the COAS said Pakistani security forces had valiantly fought upfront against terrorists of all hue and colour along with their abettors, financiers and sympathizers through an across the board, indiscriminate operation. He said with unflinching support of the entire nation, terrorists' ideologies and their narrative had been defeated, and their sanctuaries and hideouts completely eliminated.
"Our efforts against residual threat are still continuing, and cannot be entirely eliminated without optimum cooperation between neighbouring countries," he added. The COAS said,"The success of our counter terrorism operation is a common dividend, which should be optimised and shared." He also offered to benefit from Pakistan's initiative and experiences in terms of regulation of cross border movement, socio-economic development of border regions and enhanced cooperation in terms of intelligence sharing.
Porous western border and existence of some exploitable spaces, inadequate border management that allows terrorists move, lack of synergy, coordination and institutionalised mechanism of intelligence sharing, he said, still remained challenges. Those challenges were being exploited through confrontationalist and subervise approaches by hostile intelligence agencies like RAW that spilled blood of innocent people through indirect strategy, he added.
Highlighting the ongoing atrocities in Indian Occupied Kashmir, Gen Raheel said India was unwilling to address historical disputes like Kashmir that directly fanned misunderstanding and fed into persistent regional culture of conflict. He offered unlimited and sustained support to all participating countries in the conference, particularly Afghanistan. He emphasised that route to a peaceful and prosperous region run through a stable Afghanistan, which was achievable through comprehensive and coordinated approach.