General Bajwa says the Kashmir issue is pivotal in ties between Pakistan and India and there was no room for extremism in the country.
There is a need for converting Pakistan into a modern Islamic welfare state in accordance with the ideals of the Quaid-i-Azam, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa told the audience at the main ceremony held at the General Headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi to solemnize the Defence Day.
Stressing the need for a stable and inclusive government in Afghanistan, he hoped that the international community would not abandon the people in the war-torn country.
He said that he was fully aware of the problems faced by the Afghans, adding that while there was hope for peace in that country after the evacuation of foreign troops, but there were inherent dangers too.
The regional situation, the COAS said, was being closely monitored and the country was ready to cope with all potential threats. He warned all adversaries not to equate Pakistan’s desire for peace with weakness.
Vehemently rejecting all illegal measures taken in Indian occupied Kashmir, General Bajwa maintained that the Kashmir issue was pivotal in relations between Pakistan and India.
Stressing the need to discourage intolerance, hate and criticism, the COAS said that there was no room for extremism on Pakistan’s soil.
Vowing to deflect all negative ambitions aimed against the country, General Bajwa said that the country was aware of external enemies bent on spreading disinformation and other similar tactics.
Beaming with pride, he said that the country had successfully neutralized all internal and external conspiracies, adding that the military’s success depended in large part on public support.
Challenging all foes, he said that the country was ready to face any enemy at any time.
He said that no effort or sacrifice would be spared to ensure national progress and the army gave precedence to the country’s security.
Praising the martyrs who presented ultimate sacrifice in defence of the country, he said that martyrs were the nation’s pride and their families were our dignity.
General Bajwa said that the Pakistan Army was counted among the world’s best militaries, adding that the national institution had proven time and again that it knew how well to defend the country.
Earlier, President Arif Alvi also addressed the gathering.
President Alvi said that the world needed to see Pakistan’s efforts for peace without prejudice.
Rejecting India’s occupation of Kashmir, he said that the world should know by now that it was now time to end this illegal subjugation of the Kashmiri people.
He said that peace and progress in the region depended on a peaceful solution to the Kashmir issue.
Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani and leader of the opposition in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif also attended the ceremony.