The Pakistan Ex-servicemen Association (PESA) on Sunday fully backed Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif’s stance on Torkham border issue.
This was observed in a meeting of PESA by its President General Ali Kuli Khan. Vice Admiral Ahmad Tasnim, Air Marshal Masood Akhtar, Lieutenant General Naeem Akbar, Brigadier Mian Mahmud, Brigadier Masud ul Hassan and others also participated in the meeting.
The PESA criticised the lukewarm reaction of the foreign office while invitation to the Afghan foreign minister was considered premature as he should have been invited after giving Afghans a proper taste of Pakistan’s retaliation.
The ex-servicemen said that the Afghan deputy foreign minister is now arriving to hold talks therefore Pakistani side should also be represented by the junior officials. They condemned the firing by Afghan troops and criticised the conduct of Afghan ambassador who threatened Pakistan of dire consequences for insisting on improved border management system.
The Afghan government is speaking the language of some other powers who want hegemony over the region and they are seeking total surrender by the Afghan Taliban under the garb of peace talks, they noted.
Pakistan holds the cards in the form of over three million Afghan refugees who have not only damaged our economy and society but their camps are being used as launching pads for terrorist activities, PESA said.
The PESA supported the decision by the army that refugees going back to Afghanistan will not be allowed to re-enter Pakistan without proper documentation as the operation Zarb-e-Azb has entered in its final phase which cannot be compromised. Pakistan cannot leave the 2,250 kilometres long border unguarded so that terrorists can infiltrate without hesitation, they said.
The US Senate’s strict restrictions on military funding to Pakistan are considered warning signals which can be followed by using International Monetary Fund against us therefore Pakistan must have a plan B to fall back in such an eventuality, they maintained.