Collective efforts vital for stability: Apex Committee

ISLAMABAD (APP): The Central Apex Committee, which met here Friday with Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif in chair, agreed that the elimination of terrorism, economic revival and political stability were interlinked.
Since Pakistan cannot afford internal instability, national solidarity, unity and collective efforts were the need of the hour. In order to achieve these targets, national consensus should be evolved and hurdles in its way should be removed, a press release issued after the apex committee meeting here said. The meeting was attended by the Chief of Army Staff, Federal Ministers including Ministers for Finance, Interior, Information and Broadcasting, Law and Justice, Chief Ministers of all provinces including Gilgit Baltistan, Prime Minister Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Heads of Civil and Military Intelligence Agencies, Secretary Interior, All Chief Secretaries, Inspectors General of Police of all provinces including AJK, GB and Islamabad and Coordinator National Counter-terrorism Authority (NACTA).
During the meeting, the terrorist incidents particularly the incident of Peshawar Police Lines Mosque of January 30, 2023 and Karachi Police Chief Office incident on February 19 and the later on situation were reviewed in detail. The representatives of intelligence agencies briefed the participants on the overall security situation and on the action taken against the terrorists.
Inspector General of Police Sindh informed about the details of the attack on the office of Karachi Police Chief. The meeting participants saluted all the law enforcement agencies including armed forces, Rangers, Frontier Corps, Counter Terrorism Department and police for showing exemplary bravery and courage against terrorism and paid tribute to the martyred officers and jawans.
They considered the issue of non-availability of funds approved in the past for Karachi Police and security and directed that all obstacles in the ways of projects concerning police, counter terrorism department and security should be removed without any further delay. Protection of national security and life and property of people was the basic constitutional responsibility which should be performed with national passion, sincerity, focus and the best of abilities, they noted.
They said the federal government would extend full cooperation and assistance to the provinces for fulfilling the responsibility of ensuring peace and security. The meeting considered the role of media especially social media during the incidents of terrorism and operation of security forces. It was briefed that during operation of the security forces such information was also telecast from which terrorists and their facilitators could have benefited and could have impacted the security operation, putting the lives of officers and jawans in danger. It was suggested that guidance should be taken from the SOPs and regulations concerning cyber space and terrorism in other countries of the world.
In this context, with the consultation of media houses and all relevant stakeholders a suitable procedure should be followed so that in an emergency situation rumours, misleading information and fear among public could be stopped and there should be no difficulties in carrying out the security operation. The participants also agreed that in case of an emergency situation, a focal person should be given the responsibility to disseminate facts to media and the public. They also reviewed progress on the implementation of the National Action Plan and the decisions taken in the last meeting of the apex committee. A committee headed by Federal Minister for Law and Justice informed about the progress made in the investigation against terrorists, and in taking measures for making the process of prosecution and sentencing effective.