Parliamentary leaders given in-camera briefing on Indian aggression


ISLAMABAD: Parliamentary leaders were given an in-camera briefing at the Parliament House on Wednesday over the escalating tension between Pakistan and India in the wake of violation of Line of Control (LoC) by Indian Air Force (IAF).

Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi briefed the parliamentarians about the strategy of government while Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General (DG) Major General Asif Ghafoor the apprised them of the input of the military. Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa was also in attendance.

Foreign Secretary Tehmina Janjua, National Assembly (NA) Speaker Asad Qaiser, Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani, Defence Minister Pervez Khattak, Minister for Human Rights Dr Shireen Mazari andEducation Minister Shafqat Mehmood attended the meeting on behalf of the government.

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was represented by President Shehbaz Sharif, former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, former National Assembly (NA) speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, former defence minister Khawaja Asif, Ahsan Iqbal, Rana Sanaullah, Marriyum Aurangzeb, Raja Mohammad Zafarul Haq and Senator Mushahidullah Khan were to represent Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N).

Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) was represented by Chairman Asif Ali Zardari, Khursheed Shah, Raja Pervez Ashraf, Naveed Qamar, Sherry Rehman, Saleem Mandviwala, and former Senate chairman Mian Raza Rabbani represented their party.

Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) was represented by Maulana Asad Mehmood, Maulana Wasay, Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri and Maulana Ata-ur-Rehman. Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) was represented by Aminul Haque and Senator Saif. Balochistan National Party (BNP) was represented by Agha Hassan Baloch while the Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) was represented by Anwarul Haq Kakar and Khalid Magsi. Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) was represented by Tariq Bashir Cheema, according to reports.

The parliamentary leaders were informed about violation of LoC by India and the timely response by Pakistan Air Force (PAF).

They were informed about the professional preparations of armed forces and the role being played by Pakistan to eliminate tension in the region.

The parliamentary leaders were briefed on the decisions taken by the National Security Committee (NSC) and the National Command Authority (NCA).

After the meeting, FM Qureshi the told reporters that the gathering had been “very good” and all parliamentary leaders had been taken into confidence by the government regarding the prevailing situation.

He said the parliamentary parties’ leaders had expressed their solidarity with the armed forces and government.

The in-camera briefing comes a day before the joint session of the parliament concerning the latest spate of ceasefire violations by Narendra Modi-led India.

PAF shot down two Indian aircraft which violated its airspace on Wednesday. One of the Indian pilots was also arrested by Pakistan who is being treated well by the professional Pakistan Armed Forces.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan offered India one more time to start a dialogue in an address to the Pakistani nation saying, it was nowhere in the interest of Pakistan for it to be used as a base for militancy.

Tension escalated between Pakistan and India in the aftermath of Pulwama attack on February 14 following which IAF violated LoC on Tuesday before being whisked away by PAF.