CHITRAL: Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif on Sunday said peace in the country is the outcome of countless sacrifices of the people and the Army.

“Your attendance in great numbers in the festival is laudable and depictive of a resilient nation,” a statement issued by the military’s media wing, ISPR, quoted General Raheel as saying during the Shandur Polo Festival in Chitral district of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KPK).

The thrilling polo festival, which dates back to 1936, is not only enjoyed by locals, but also foreign visitors.

“The Shandur Festival is not only a good omen for the growth of national and international tourism in the country but it is also a clear indication for terrorists that the Pakistani nation will continue its traditions alive without any fear,” the army chief said in his address to participants of the annual festival.

The COAS further said the ongoing military operation Zarb-e-Azb will continue across the country for the lasting peace and stability.

“The success of this operation, however, depends on the nation’s support and the leading role of the country’s youth.”

General Raheel reiterated that terrorists and their facilitators are being chased out across the country and Pakistan will soon be recognized for its better education facilities, peace and progress in the world.

General Raheel Sharif said journey to achieve sustainable peace in the country will continue with full determination.  He said Pakistan Army will not hesitate to offer any sacrifice for defence of the country and welfare of the people.

The army chief also lauded the role of different institutions of the Pakistan Army and local government for facilitating the people of Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral by providing rescue and relief activities in the region in wake of natural disasters.