Speech of the Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif at Pak Army Field Excercise

November 04, 2013

General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, Chief of Army Staff,

Services Chiefs,

Federal Ministers,

Members of the Parliament, Distinguished guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Assalam-o-Alaikam.

          I feel privileged to be here on this important and highly anticipated professional activity of Pakistan Army which marks the culmination of 5 years long training process conceived and executed by Pakistan Army.

I wish to congratulate all the participants on this commendable achievement which reflects par excellence standards of our Armed Forces.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Today, Pakistan is faced with serious challenges both within the country and at international level. But there is hope, a hope to rise through and meet these challenges. We are located at the crossroads of competing and converging interests.

The National security paradigm of Pakistan evolves within the context of its peculiar geography, history and culture and determines the contours of national and military response.

Gone are the days when our National Security Policies were determined through telephone calls from abroad. We now have a democratically elected Government, chosen by the people of Pakistan.

It was the chosen government that took the decision to make this nation a Nuclear Power, it was the chosen government that indigenously manufactured the JF-17 Thunder aircraft, the Al-Khalid and Al-Zarar Tanks and many more national security systems. Hence, the real power lies in the hands of citizens of Pakistan to decide what they want.

I am thankful to Almighty Allah who has  blessed us with the understanding to be united when it comes to protection of our motherland.   

Pakistan’s military strategy is based on credible minimum deterrence. Highest state of preparedness encompassing optimized set of military capabilities, remains it cornerstone.

Our democratic system, economic potential, vibrant population, national unity, and professional Armed Forces provides strategic stability to the South Asian region.

Pakistan Army has always stood by the people of Pakistan in thick and thin. Be it natural calamities like floods and earthquakes, maintaining law & order, imparting training to our law enforcement agencies, Army has always come in aid of the civilian government. This passion of being in the forefront is something that we as a nation are very proud of.

It is said that “those who sweat more, bleed less”. Today’s particular display of military professionalism, I am sure, would not only warm the hearts of all Pakistanis but will also make it very clear that our Armed Forces are the best and ever-ready to take up any challenge.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

It has to be understood that economic development is closely linked to peace and security. Stable economic environment facilitates growth and development. In my recent visits abroad, I made it very clear that we do not want financial aid. Rather, Pakistan intends to maintain foreign relations on the basis of bilateralism while at the same time safeguarding our political, economic and national sovereignty.  The Government of Pakistan has made its position clear that drone strikes constituted a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty, violative of international humanitarian laws, besides being counter-productive to our efforts for bringing peace and stability in Pakistan and the region.   

Ladies and Gentlemen,

My Government is firmly resolved to bringing the cycle of bloodshed and violence to an end, but it cannot be done over-night, nor can it be done by unleashing senseless force against our citizens, without first making every effort to bring the misguided and confused elements of society, back to the mainstream. We also have to ensure that the political parties, military, and civil society are on the same page, so as to create the enabling environment necessary to tackle this menace.

It was to this end that in an extraordinary expression of national unity and cohesion, the All Parties Conference (APC) underlined the imperative need of giving peace a chance.

Unity among all stakeholders including political parties, Military Forces, Executive, Judiciary, Parliament and the Media, is very much required in these difficult times. No one wants any further bloodshed. We have seen enough of that and our soldiers have paid the highest price in the form of embracing martyrdom. Their toil and blood has contributed towards making the defence of the country resolute and impregnable.

 I sincerely appreciate and thank our valiant soldiers and their families again for the sacrifices rendered. The nation is proud of them all.

Having witnessed our military capability and dedication, it is very re-assuring that our integrity and security is in safe hands.

I once again thank General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani Chief of Army Staff for inviting me to this spectacular demonstration of military skills.

Pakistan Armed Forces “ZINDABAD”

Pakistan “PAINDABAD”.