Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif on Friday paid his gratitude to the people of Swat for their valiant stand against reign of terror and standing alongside the security forces to throw terrorists out of the valley forever.

According to an Inter-Services Public Relations statement, General Sharif, who was addressing a ceremony, said a new era of development will begin in Swat with inauguration of the army cantonment .

The army chief said establishment of cantonment in Swat will act as a deterrent for terrorists, boost the confidence of all law-enforcement agencies and help bring permanent sense of security with readily available force to counter any threat to peace in the area.

General Sharif said the cantonment will also contribute to local socio-economic development of the area.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister Pervaiz Khattak and Governor Iqbal Zafar Jhagra also laid the foundation stone of Swat Cantonment during the visit to Mangora, Kaju and Khwazakhela areas of Swat .