ISLAMABAD - Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif admired the services of Boxer Amir Khan for Pakistan, who met him at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi on Monday.

According to a statement released by ISPR, during their meeting, Amir Khan expressed solidarity with the bereaved families of the Peshawar carnage and the armed forces.

Amir also visited Army Public School in Peshawar and offered fateha for the martyrs. Talking to media persons, Amir said he was deeply shocked over the killings of the innocent children; he was here to encourage the schoolchildren recovering from the trauma.  Amir Khan said the children were the future of the country and that the Pak Army was determined to wipe off terrorist elements.

Amir Khan also visited Combined Military Hospital (CMH) to enquire after the injured children.

Security was beefed up during his visit.

“Children must not be afraid of going back to the school; we must revive their confidence and improve the country’s security situation,” he added.

Expressing grief over the loss of at least 148 people, mostly children, in the brutal attack, Khan said he had come to Pakistan to meet with the bereaved families of the victims.

Expressing the hope about the success of efforts of the security forces, he said: “All we can do is to pray for the victims’ families and stop recurrence of terrorist attacks.”

He said it was not an attack on the school, but on the future of Pakistan. He said the killings of innocent children were against humanity.

Amir Khan lauded the sacrifices of the Pakistani nation and Pak security forces in the war on terrorism. He highly eulogised the courage and bravery shown by the students.

Earlier upon arrival, Brigadier Mudasir Azam received him at the helipad at Corps Headquarters, Peshawar. AFP adds: The WBC welterweight world champion who is of Pakistani origin pledged to help rebuild the Army Public School in the northwestern city of Peshawar, the scene of Pakistan’s deadliest-ever terror attack.

He offered prayers at a memorial to the dead at the school gates and said he wanted to visit the city despite security concerns to show solidarity with the parents of the martyred children.

“The main reason for my visit to Pakistan is that I wanted to come to Peshawar and see the parents and the children and give the children the confidence to go back to school," he told reporters. “My heart goes out to the families and the parents whose children have died,” he said.

The attack this month shocked the world and prompted Pakistan’s political and military leaders to take a decisive action to stamp out militancy.

Khan, 28, said, “We have to stop terrorism and we can stop it with the help of the army and the people of Pakistan,” he said. Last week the boxer announced he would be setting up academies for young people in selected Pakistani cities. Through his foundation, he would support Pakistani children in the health and education sectors.

He also plans to auction a $45,000 pair of shorts to raise money to help rebuild the school.

Khan wore the flamboyant shorts which included a waistband made from 24-carat gold threading during his successful WBC title defence against Devon Alexander in Las Vegas this month.

Schools security being beefed up

Online adds: Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Pervez Khattak has stated that proper arrangements are being made for the security of the schools throughout the province.

Talking to newsmen in Peshawar on Monday, he said that a new mechanism has been prepared for the security of schools. All schools are being provided mobile phones through which the Principals just by pushing a button will inform the law-enforcing agencies in case of any emergency, he added.

Answering a question, the Chief Minister said security of jails has also been enhanced.

To another question, he said that the Federal government will make necessary amendments in the laws to effectively deal with the terrorists.

BOMB DEFUSED IN NOWSHERA

APP adds: Bomb Disposal Squad Monday foiled a terrorism bid by defusing a 7-kilogram bomb planted by unknown miscreants near a graveyard on Misri Banda Road, police confirmed.

According to Akora Khattak Police Station, police team rushed to the spot after receiving information that unknown miscreants planted a remote controlled bomb near Pir Sabaq area on Misri Banda Road.

Meanwhile, a team of BDS unit was also called that defused the bomb. The bomb was said to be of foreign origin and had seven grenades that were entwined by prima cord and batteries.