Divide in Pak on action against terror
The divided opinion between Pakistan Army and civil establishment on action against terror groups has spilled out in open. The two leading newspapers of Pakistan – Dawn and The Nation, have differently reported on the same day about a crucial meeting on how to tackle terror, which in turn betrays the simmering tension between the two power centres.
Though Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has disowned the report carried out by Dawn, which said that facing international isolation, the Prime Minister in an unprecedented move warned the powerful military not to shield banned militant groups and directed authorities to conclude the Pathankot terror attack probe and the 2008 Mumbai attack trials, experts say that it was very unlikely that Dawn would go wrong in reporting on the Muslim League, Nawaz Sharif’s party.
On the other hand, a more conservative publication The Nation has exhibited how powerful the military was in Pakistan as army chief Raheel Sharif described Pakistan as “a nation that has made unparalleled contributions in the global fight against terrorism” and added that any aggression by the country’s enemy (India) would be met with a befitting response.
Dawn in its report had, on the other hand, said that at a meeting earlier this week Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Aizaz Chaudhry made a presentation in the Prime Minister’s Office to a small group of civil and military officials, the crux of which was that Pakistan faced diplomatic isolation and that the government’s talking points have been met with indifference in major world capitals. On the US, Chaudhry said that relations have deteriorated and will likely further deteriorate because of the American demand that action be taken against the Haqqani network.
However, The Nation’s report quoted General Sharif as saying that through Operation Zarb-e-Azb, Pak army had successfully rooted out terrorist infrastructure and also defeated the residual terrorist elements in the form of facilitators. He was quoted as saying that enemies of Pakistan (meaning India) will make efforts to reverse the gains in the fight against terror, but “their nefarious designs will not be allowed to succeed at any cost.”