Analysts urge Islamabad, Washington to strengthen counter-terrorism cooperation
Pakistan Army recovers US-Canadian family abducted in Afghanistan in 2012.
Pakistan Army has recovered five western hostages, including one Canadian, his US national wife and their three children from terrorists' custody. According to an Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement issued, the hostages were recovered in an intelligence based operation conducted by Pakistani troops. The hostages were captured by terrorists from Afghanistan during 2012 and kept as hostages there. The US intelligence agencies had been tracking them and shared their shifting across to Pakistan on Wednesday through Kurram Agency border. The operation by Pakistani forces, based on actionable intelligence from US authorities was successful. All hostages were recovered safe and sound and are being repatriated to the country of their origin. The success underscores the importance of timely intelligence sharing and Pakistan's continued commitment towards fighting this menace through cooperation between two forces against a common enemy, the ISPR statement added. DG ISPR Major General Asif Ghafoor has said that there are no safe havens in the country as our armed forces have successfully eliminated their sanctuaries.
Rahimullah Yousafzai, (Senior Analyst)
Pakistani forces have recovered five western hostages, including one Canadian, his US national wife and their three children from terrorist custody which is a big achievement. This operation will lead to improvement of image of Pakistan at the world. The operation was carried out with intelligence sharing of American agencies. Islamabad has a stance that both Pakistan and United States must share intelligence information in order to eliminate terrorism from the region.
Brig, retired, Aftab Afzal (Defense Analyst)
The North American family was being rescued with joint operation of intelligence agencies and Pakistan Army. US intelligence agencies have been tracking the hostages even in Afghanistan and shared intelligence with Pakistan when the family was moved to our country. Donald Trump has to review his new South Asian policy as Pakistan has rejected the policy. It is very clear that Pakistan will never accept any political role of India in Afghanistan.
Merger of FATA with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Implementation of FATA Reforms package
Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has reiterated government's commitment for merger of FATA with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He was talking to Governor Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Iqbal Zafar Jhagra in Islamabad on Thursday. The Prime Minister said that wok on creating an enabling environment and taking required legal and administrative measures for the purpose was being done on fast track basis. They discussed overall situation in the province and steps being taken for mainstreaming of FATA. Developmental projects in the province also came under discussion.
Ghaus Muhammad Khan Niazi (Senator, PML-N)
Tribal people have played a vital role in the independence of Pakistan. The government is making all-out efforts to develop mutual consensus on FATA reforms. The merger of Fata with KP would extend the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and the high court to the tribal areas. The FATA reforms are finalized, the hope is that a truly representative and democratic set of recommendations will have been agreed upon.
Host: Tazeen Akhtar
Co-Host: Dr. Khurram