ISLAMABAD: Chief of the Army Staff General Raheel Sharif on Friday directed all concerned law-enforcing agencies to continue intelligence-based operations (IBOs) in the country to apprehend all terrorists, their facilitators, abettors and financiers from across the country without any discrimination and irrespective of the cost.
“We will not stop unless we achieve our end objective of a terror-free Pakistan,” General Sharif remarked while addressing troops at North Waziristan today.
General Sharif also visited forward locations close to the Pak–Afghan border in North Waziristan Agency (NWA) and was briefed in detail by the formation commander about progress of Operation Zarb-i-Azb, and plans to clear the remaining pockets of terrorists in Shawal region.
“It’s a matter of great privilege and honour to be commanding such an accomplished and battle hardened army,” General Sharif said on the occasion.General Sharif commended the professionalism, sacrifices and high morale of troops who have recently completed the preliminary phase of Shawal operation by seizing peaks around the strategic valley.
He appreciated the role of special integrated teams which have been responsible for carrying out IBOs across the urban areas of Pakistan. The teams have been successful in severing links between terrorists sanctuaries in remote areas and their sleeper cells in urban areas.
Speaking on the occasion, he laid importance upon capitalising operational gains which would bring lasting peace and prosperity to the region.Army chief General Raheel Sharif also visited Wana, in South Waziristan Agency (SWA) and was briefed on the ongoing rehabilitation work, and the relief it will bring to people of the region. General Sharif commended the noteworthy effects of numerous small and mega projects ongoing in the region.
While acknowledging the hardships and sacrifices of internally-displaced persons (IDPs), the army chief asked all stakeholders to ensure a dignified and expeditious return for IDPs to a better built and rehabilitated region.
Military operation Zarb-i-Azb was launched in North Waziristan on June 15 following a brazen militant attack on Karachi’s international airport and the failure of peace talks between the government and Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) negotiators.He added that the army would fully assist in completing all development projects on time.
Authorities have since vowed to intensify operations, using air strikes, artillery and mortars to take back territory both in the border regions and other parts of the country.
North Waziristan is one of the seven regions in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) governed by tribal laws which is situated along the Pak-Afghan border.
The military has also successfully brought to a close a massive offensive in Khyber tribal region, effectively flushing out militants and blocking their crossing points on borders with Afghanistan, according to government and security officials.