Govt pursued a policy of strategic patience, toleration and reconciliation, PM

Islamabad: Prime Minister Raja Parvez Ashraf has said that the elected government is completing its tenure despite challenges and the nation is poised for general elections, a defining moment in our history.

Speaking on the occasion of National Security Policy Presentations by Participants of National Security and War Course at the National Defence University in Islamabad Tuesday, he said we have pursued a policy of strategic patience, toleration and reconciliation to lay a foundation for sustainable and stable political system in the country.

He said the forces of doom and gloom thrive in an environment of chaos, uncertainty and instability. He said we need to guard against all such forces who are out to derail the system so assiduously put in place after a protracted struggle.

Raja Pervez Ashraf reaffirmed that the government is committed to free, fair and transparent elections which will be held on time and conducted under the supervision of an independent Election Commission.

He acknowledged the role played by democratic forces, civil society, media and state institutions in strengthening democracy in the country.

The Prime Minister said the recent Indian adventures on the Line of Control and wave of terrorist attacks in the country amidst political flux ahead of national elections point towards the magnitude, scale and enormity of the challenges faced by the country.

Given the varied nature of challenges confronting the country, there is need to increase the frequency of such exercises so as to afford wider exposure to elements of national power.

He assured that government is fully aware of the criticality of the situation and is taking all possible measures to maintain stability, national cohesion and preserve national interests.

The Prime Minister said today, there is a national consensus on fighting and eliminating extremism and terrorism which threaten not only our national security but also our way of life and we will not allow terrorists and extremists to subdue our will or frighten us.

He said terrorism has changed our lifestyles. Though the people of Pakistan, its law enforcement agencies, particularly the armed forces have rendered unprecedented sacrifices both in men and material in the fight against terrorism, yet the international clamour to do more refuses to die.

He said we have an independent and vibrant media which has to play a key role. It is now their responsibility to contribute towards national cohesion and project the true image of Pakistan.

Raja Pervez Ashraf said that the economic diplomacy is an integral part of our foreign policy. Pakistan is blessed with immense human as well as vast natural resources which need to be tapped to make Pakistan worthy of its status of a nuclear power.

About relations with India, the Prime Minister said we have initiated a composite dialogue process with New Delhi to resolve all issues including the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir.

He said Pakistan supports an Afghan owned and Afghan led peace process for achieving intra-Afghan consensus. A peaceful, stable and economically developed Afghanistan is vital for Pakistan’s own stability.