RAWALPINDI - Pakistan Army said on Tuesday that house arrest of Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed is a policy decision of state institutions.

“The state took the decision regarding house arrest of Hafiz Saeed in the national interest, it was a policy decision of [state] institutions, lots of institutions will have to do their jobs,” military spokesman said at a news briefing at  GHQ.

There was no foreign pressure behind this decision and it was taken in national interest, Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General Major General Asif Ghafoor emphasised.

Referring to disappearance of bloggers in the recent days, he categorically denied any link of the missing activists with the army. If the interior minister had stated anything about the bloggers this does not mean that he had pointed his finger towards intelligence agencies, he added.

Warning to India

The ISPR DG warned India of effective response in case of any misadventure. “War is no solution to any problem. But our desire for peace should not be misconstrued as our weakness,” Ghafoor said.

He said that India is working on a plan called ‘Cold Start Doctrine’ as recently revealed by Indian army chief and that was precisely the reason of its staging a drama of surgical strike against Pakistan last year.

General Ghafoor said that armed forces and the people of Pakistan are ready to respond to any misadventure by India.

He said that Pakistan’s recent successful testing of Babar-III and Abbabeel missiles is reflective of the resolve to defend itself.

He emphasised that Pakistan wants peaceful solution to all disputes including Jammu and Kashmir with India, but not at the cost of its dignity and honour.

The military spokesman noted that India resorted to 314 ceasefire violations resulting in martyrdom of 46 civilians in the last four months, while 40 Indian troops were also killed in the befitting response given by Pakistan.

As a whole India carried out 945 ceasefire violations along the Line of Control and Working Boundary during the last three years, he added.

He said Indian violations were part of a well-thought-out plan to divert global attention from brutalities against people of Occupied Kashmir.

Afghan situation

Commenting on the situation in Afghanistan, ISPR DG rejected the propaganda that Pakistan is involved in acts of terror in Afghanistan; rather, he said, it desires a peaceful and stable Afghanistan.

“It is the stated policy of Pakistan that it will never allow the use of its territory against any other country,” he emphasised.

Ghafoor also emphasised  Afghanistan needs to take stapes for effective management of its border with Pakistan and said that Pakistan has established an effective mechanism at Chamman and Torkhum border points at Pak-Afghan border to stop illegal border crossings.

He pointed out that Pakistan has presence of 190,000 troops to secure Pak-Afghan border. He said the international community including the major powers acknowledge the sacrifices rendered by Pakistan in the war against terror.

He reminded that all sanctuaries of terrorists have been eliminated in Fata near Pak-Afghan border and the majority of the terrorists have been killed, except some leaders of TTP who fled into Afghanistan to evade the military operation and are still hiding there.

Anti-terror ops

Giving details about Operation Zarb-e-Azb, Maj-General Asif Ghafoor said so far 26,000 intelligence-based combing operations have been carried out in North Waziristan and Khyber Agency.

In Balochistan, he said, over 3000 intelligence based and combing operations have been conducted. He said security forces are effectively countering activities of RAW and India-sponsored saboteurs and terrorists in Balochistan.

Director General ISPR said that there has been 90 percent reduction in incidents of target-killing, terrorism and extortion in Karachi.

He was of the view that Indian spy agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) is trying to destabilise Pakistan also with the support of Afghanistan’s National Security Directorate (NDS).

Commenting of Pakistan Army’s support plan about upcoming national population and housing census, he said that Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa has approved deployment of 200,000 troops for this national obligation.