The National Assembly resumed its session at the Parliament House in Islamabad this evening with Speaker Raja Pervaiz Ashraf in the chair.
The House offered fateha for the departed souls of police officials, who got martyred in a suicide attack in a mosque of Peshawar Police Lines, and others. The House also prayed for the early recovery of the injured.
Defence Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif has said the entire nation should forge unity against terrorism to fully eliminate militancy from Pakistan.
Speaking on the floor of the House today, he said religion has nothing to do with terrorism, but it is also a fact that religion is used to take the lives of innocent people.
Emphasizing self-accountability, the Minister said terrorists elements were allowed to settle in Pakistan under a faulty decision. He said it is a matter of great concern that terrorists use Afghan soil for carrying out their activities in Pakistan. He said Afghanistan is our brotherly country and we want peace there. But, it is an irony that 450,000 Afghan citizens came to Pakistan on valid documents but they never returned to their home country. He further said 1.5 million registered and 3.5 million unregistered Afghan refugees have been living in Pakistan.
Khawaja Asif said Afghan Taliban, under Doha Agreement, had consented that nobody will be allowed to use Afghanistan’s soil against others.
Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah has expressed the resolve to win the war on terrorism at all costs.
Speaking on a motion in the National Assembly on a recent wave of terrorism in the country, he said terrorism is a collective issue, which can be eliminated jointly. He said the political leadership and the military leadership are determined to seek guidance from the parliament in order to defeat terrorism.
Condemning the terrorist incident in Peshawar, the Minister said terrorism should not be bracketed with any community or ethnicity. He said every Pakistani is disturbed over the terrorist incidents, irrespective of where they happen. He said we are equally gloomy and sad over the terrorist incidents in Peshawar, Lahore, Karachi or anywhere else.
The Interior Minister assured the House that the political and the military leadership would take the parliament into confidence over the recent wave of terrorism.
Giving detail of the Peshawar terrorist attack, Rana Sanaullah said a suicide bomber exploded himself in the mosque, killing 100 people, including 97 police officials and three civilians. He expressed fear that the death toll can rise as 27 of 216 injured are in a critical condition. He said the rescue operation has been completed. He said TTP-Khurasani has claimed responsibility for the incident. He said investigations into the incident are underway and Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif will present findings of the probe before the parliament.
The Interior Minister also made it clear that these terrorist incidents are against Pakistan and not against any region or province of the country.
Participating in the debate, Noor Alam Khan demanded of the government to fix the responsibility of the incident. He said one hundred families were ruined in the recent incident of suicide attack on a mosque in Peshawar.
Maulana Abdul Akbar Chitrali said all the political parties should come forward for a grand dialogue in the country to formulate policy to ensure political stability.
Hashim Khan Notezai said Afghan refugees should be sent back to Afghanistan and focus should be made on our own people. He said a policy should be evolved in this regard. He said heads of all the political parties should be invited to the National Security Committee for the proposals and suggestions to curb terrorism from the country.
Shazia Marri said it is the need of the hour to show maturity and unity against the terrorists.
Those who speak on the occasion included Dr. Muhammad Afzal Khan Dhandla and Engr. Sabir Hussain Kaim Khani.
The House has now been adjourned to meet again tomorrow at 04:30 in the evening.