KARACHI: President Mamnoon Hussain Tuesday said Pakistan had kept the region safe from any mishap by maintaining nuclear balance and the purpose of increase in defence production was also to maintain balance of power in the region.
Speaking at the seminar “Stability and the Economics of Regional Peace in South Asia” on the occasion of the International Defence Exhibition and Seminar (IDEAS) 2016, here, he said Pakistan was a peace-loving country and wanted cordial relations on the basis of equality with all the neighbouring countries, including India.
President Mamnoon emphasised that regional peace and stability was vital to ensure development and prosperity in the region. The regional countries should learn from past mistakes and refrain from interfering in the internal affairs of others, he added.
He said Pakistan was swiftly moving forward in defence production and different other fields, and the participation of the increasing number of countries in the IDEAS-2016 proved that fact.
Pakistan, he said, had set a precedent for the world by effectively curbing terrorism through the Operation Zarb-e-Azb and National Action Plan.
He said the excellent exhibition of defence production reflectd the extra-ordinary expertise and dedication of the experts and workers associated with their field.
The President pointed out that the government through a comprehensive strategy had invested in education and also promoted healthy activities among the youth, and those efforts were producing very fruitful results.
About the Kashmir dispute, he said it was the biggest challenge to peace in the region. The people of Jammu and Kashmir were deprived of their right to self-determination and were facing brutalities at the hand of occupation forces.
Pakistan, he added, would continue moral, political and diplomatic support to the people of Kashmir.
President Mamnoon said repeated unprovoked ceasefire violations by India on the Line of Control were claiming precious lives.
No one should misconstrue the policy of restraint, as Pakistan was fully capable to respond to any aggression, he added.
He said India’s refusal to attend the 19th meeting of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) hurt the efforts for regional peace, and violated the SAARC Charter.
The President reiterated that Afghanistan was a close neighbour and brotherly country, and its stability and prosperity was necessary not only for the region, but also for Pakistan.
About China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project, he said the whole region woukld hugely benefit from the initiative.
President Mamnoon said the efforts by Pakistani experts in defence production were for regional peace. “We want that by maintaining balance of power, regional stability, development and prosperity be ensured,” he added.
He said the IDEAS-2016 was a milestone towards achieving those objectives, which gained international recognition in very short period.
“We are proud of our scientists and technical experts, who have produced the most effective, sophisticated and low-cost weapons of international standards.”
He said,”We want to invite our friends and the world community to join these endeavours through joint ventures and investment. Our this offer would be very beneficial for the economy of regional peace.”
Federal Minister for Defence Production Rana Tanveer Hussain, armed forces chiefs, Director General Defence Export Promotion Organisation (DEPO) Maj-Gen Agha Masood Akram, parliamentarians, and a large of delegates attended the seminar.