‘Armed forces fully prepared to respond to any challenge’

Naval Chief Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah said Wednesday that Pakistan is a peace-loving country and seeks a harmonious co-existence with all countries.

Addressing the passing out parade at Pakistan Air Force (PAF) Academy here, Zakaullah stressed that Pakistan’s desire for peace must not be construed as a sign of weakness, reported Radio Pakistan.

The naval chief said any attempt to browbeat Pakistan would neither succeed nor serve the purpose of peace and prosperity in the region.

The valiant armed forces of Pakistan are fully geared up to give a befitting response in case of any misadventure, he said.

Admiral Zakaullah said in the current security scenario certain extremist elements abetted externally are out to disrupt peace and harmony in Pakistan.

He said the PAF has extended all out support to Pakistan Army in combating anti-state elements in operation Zarb-i-Azb.

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.

Security forces 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. The army says it has cleared most of North Waziristan.

The final phase of Zarb-i-Azb got under way in August this year as troops launched a ground offensive in Shawal Valley, one of the last strongholds of militants in the region.

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