ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif on Saturday asked the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) to enter into a dialogue with the government and said all political forces need to stand together to foil the internal and external conspiracies against the country.
Addressing the participants of the National Security Conference, comprising heads and representatives of all major political parties in National Assembly and the military leadership,here at the PM House, the Prime Minister said it was time to leave behind the negative politics of the past and join hands for the progress and prosperity of Pakistan.
He said he also expected that the Opposition would act positively at a time, when the country was passing through a critical juncture with the Operation “Zarb-e-Azb” going on in North Waziristan to eliminate extremist and the terrorists.
He said there was no justification for an ‘Azadi March’, only after his government’s one year in power.
He also appreciated the Jamat-e-Islami leader Siraj ul Haq for meeting Imran Khan, getting his point of view and conveying it to him, so as to resolve their differences.
Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif recalled his meetings with the political leaders and said they all assured that they would support the system and democracy.
Nawaz Sahrif said Pakistan today was facing several challenges on all fronts and no conspiracies could be allowed at this stage.
He said after year-long efforts, a turnaround in the economy was being witnessed, Moody’s has changed the country’s ratings from negative to stable, and lately it also upgraded the ratings of five national banks of Pakistan.
He said China has approved, with loans, 14 power projects for immediate execution in Pakistan that would generate 10400 MW of electricity.
The Prime Minister said a new beginning has been made after the 2013 general election and his party accepted the mandate of all other parties with an open-heart, and had no objection when they desired to form their own governments in respective provinces.
“We accepted their mandate. We have good working relationship with the provincial governments and are sincerely cooperating with them,” the Prime Minister remarked.
“Any political party that needs to survive must learn how to work together,” he said.
He was also appreciative of the role of opposition and said they also wanted the system to work, without any confrontation as the country was facing several challenges that need to be urgently addressed.
The Prime Minister also recalled a previously held All Parties Conference with an almost identical agenda of strategizing the elimination of terrorism from the country.
He said terrorism had resulted into loss of lives of thousands of armed forces and police personnel as well as the civilians besides inflicting huge loss to the national economy.
He said at that time all political parties put forward proposals keeping the national interest above and all had agreed to exercise the option of the dialogue.
Nawaz Sharif said the government carried forward the dialogue option but it could not yield results. Later, a political consensus was evolved that the option of operation be exercised for elimination of terrorists.
He said he had advised not to give up dialogue, but later, the terrorists attacked Karachi Airport. Terrorists also carried out several attacks in which a number of security personnel including a major general of Pakistan Army were martyred.
“No doubt, all sacrifices which brought a hope for peace in the country are valuable,” the Prime Minister said adding that later the operation had become inevitable as the terrorists had been destroying the area by laying landmines and other means.
Later, Director General Military Operations Major General Amir Riaz briefed the political leadership about the ongoing Operation Zarb-e-Azb and the status of objectives achieved so far. Chief of the Army Staff General Raheel Sharif, DG-ISI Lt. Gen Muhammad Zahir ul Islam and DG ISPR Maj. General Asim Saleem Bajwa also attended the conference.
Other participants included Syed Khursheed Ahmad Shah, Leader of Opposition; Senator Raja Zafar Ul Haq, Leader of House in Senate;Senator Mian Raza Rabbani, PPPP; Makhdoom Amin Fahim, PPPP; DrMuhammad Farooq Sattar, MQM; Maulana Fazal ur Rehman, President JUI (F); Pir Sahab Pagaro Sharif, President PML (F); Pir Syed Sadruddin Shah, Minister for Overseas Pakistanis; Mahmood Khan Achakzai,President PKMAP; Siraj Ul Haq, Ameer Jamaat-e-Islami; Liaquat Baloch, General Secretary Jamaat-e-Islami; Senator Afrasiab Khattak, ANP; Haji Ghulam Ahmad Bilour, MNA (ANP); Muhammad Ijaz Ul Haq,MNA (PML-Z); Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao, President Qaumi Watan Party;Mir Hasil Khan Bizenjo, Senator (National Party); Babar Khan Ghouri,Senator (MQM); Professor Sajid Mir, Senator (Jamiat-e-Ahle Hadith);Mrs. Kalsoom Parveen, Senator (BNP-A); Minister for Finance Muhammad Ishaq Dar, Minister for Information Pervaiz Rashid,Minister for Water & Power, Khawaja Muhammad Asif; Chief Minister Sindh Syed Qaim Ali Shah, Chief Minister Balochistan Dr. Abdul Malik Baloch and Dr. Asif Kirmani, Political Secretary to the PM.