Pakistan’s Sovereignty Non-Negotiable: Prime Minister
Islamabad: The meeting of Defence Committee of the Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani has started at the PM House today, which is being attended by Senior Minister for Industries and Defence Productions, Minister for Defence, Foreign Minister, Finance Minister, Interior Minister, Information Minister, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, Chief of Army Staff, Air Chief, Naval Chief, Principal Secretary to Prime Minister, Cabinet Secretary, Foreign Secretary and Director General of Intelligence Bureau. The meeting will consider the US Centcom Inquiry Report on the border incident of November 26, 2011.
While addressing the meeting, the Prime Minister said that Pakistan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are non-negotiable.
Following is the text of the opening statement of the Prime Minister.
I welcome you to this meeting of the DCC. I attach great importance to this Forum, which is responsible for policy consultations and coordination on issues pertaining to national security, defence and foreign policy.
It is a matter of immense satisfaction that the DCC has held regular meetings and deliberated on all important matters relating to safeguarding Pakistan’ security.
The decisions taken by the DCC have guided the Government in steering the court in a particularly difficult phase, given the complexity of the regional and global environment.
It has been our consistent endeavour to safeguard Pakistan’s supreme national interests in a most effective and inclusive manner. Terrorism and the continued strife and conflict in Afghanistan have impacted directly and severely on Pakistan.
Thousands of our people, officers and jawans of the armed forces and security personnel fell victim to terror and militancy. We have achieved notable success in dealing with the menace of terrorism. We have done so in our national interest.
Our Government and Parliament and above all our patriotic people have stood fully behind our brave armed forces and security personnel and there is complete national consensus that terrorism will not be allowed any space on the sacred soil of Pakistan.
Pakistan has also been cooperating with the international community. Our cooperation is based on a “partnership” approach, which entails mutual respect, trust and mutual interest.
Pakistan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are not negotiable. We would reject any approach that would tend to compromise our sovereignty, honour and national dignity. Our contribution and steadfast commitment to stability and peace at home and in our region is unquestionable and second to none.
Following the NATO/ISAF attacks on our border posts on 26 November 2011, this Forum took clear decision. These were subsequently endorsed by the Cabinet. The Parliamentary Committee on National Security was entrusted to formulate recommendations for consideration by the Parliament. The Committee has held several meetings and its conclusions and recommendations will be considered by the Parliament.
A full review of the terms of cooperation with US/NATO/ISAF is in process. We hope that decisions in this regard will be in line with the aspirations of our people and go a long way in preserving and protecting our national interests and promote peace in the region.
Pakistan is a peace loving country. We are committed to forging good relations with all neighbours and the international community. Pakistan will continue to play a responsible role for promoting global and regional peace and security. Our record in international peace keeping has been appreciated by the international community on a number of occasions.
National unity is the need of the hour. Democracy provides avenues to forge national consensus. Each organ and state institution has to play its due role, within its respective domain, to bring forth the best in promoting Pakistan’s national interest.
The armed forces of Pakistan are a pillar of the nation’s resilience and strength. The nation applauds their heroic services in the defence of the motherland. Similarly, the civil institutions have their due role to play for socio-economic development and for ensuring progress and prosperity.
Together in complete harmony with each other and other vital institutions we can change the country’s destiny and accord, its rightful place in the comity of nations.
It has been my Government’s policy to allow and enable all state institutions to play their role in their respective domains for the common good of the people of Pakistan. It is this desire to set good and healthy democratic traditions that has enabled us to always seek strength from the Parliament, which is the hallmark of a democratic government.
Our record attendances of the National Assembly and more than 100 Cabinet Meetings are testimony to the government commitment to strengthening democracy in the country. In the same vein, timely ECC meetings and regular meetings of the DCC with the cooperation of all institutions have gone a long way in achieving consensus on important issues. Forums for inter-Ministerial and inter-agency consultations and coordination, such as the DCC and the Cabinet exit and are functioning smoothly.
The nation’s strength is its institutions. We will do everything to strengthen our institutions with a view to enhancing their effectiveness and capacity. There should be no ambiguity on this account.
The specific agenda before the DCC is the consideration of the US CENTCOM Inquiry Report on the Border incident of 26 November, 2011.
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