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LAHORE: National Security Advisor Dr Moeed Yusuf said on Saturday that the newly-announced National Security Policy focuses on economic diplomacy besides creating friendly relationships with the neighbours.

While talking to a group of journalists at the Governors House, Dr Moeed Yusuf said that the pace of work on the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor is very fast. He also said that the government is focusing on strengthening regional connectivity, especially with the Central Asian Estates. He said the national security was defined ‘in the right manner' in the new policy as Pakistan had a one-dimensional thought: “we only need military security”.

“Our national security thinking seeks to identify means of expanding economic resources through which Pakistan can simultaneously strengthen its traditional and non-traditional security,” said Dr Moeed Yusuf.

The main themes of the NSP are national cohesion, securing economic future, defense and territorial integrity, internal security and foreign policy in the changing world.

PM Imran launches Pakistan’s first National Security Policy

“The policy should not be politicized thought it could be criticized,” Moeed said.

This policy will determine the direction of the country and the debate will evolve consensus on the policy. He further said that policy can be reviewed yearly or it can be reviewed by any upcoming government. He also said that the government made the policy as per the constitution of Pakistan.

While responding to the question on taking parliament into confidence before announcing the policy, the NSA said the policy was discussed with all the political stakeholders time and again and he is ready to brief the National Assembly and the Senate.

The NSA said that we have a bitter history of civil-military ties but we have witnessed a consensus in the formulation of the NSP as all the state organs have contributed to the formulation of the policy. He also said that hat issues related to civil-military balance and working relationship and capacity of institutions to implement the policy are complicated issues and expressed the hope that we will be able to deal with these issues through the newly-formulated National Security Policy (NSP). While responding to a question regarding relations with Afghanistan Moeed said that Pakistan’s relationship with the Taliban regime is good adding that trade activity between the two countries is going on smoothly. To another query regarding Taliban soldiers disrupting Pakistan from erecting fencing on Afghanistan, he said that all issues will be solved through talks.

He also said that Kashmir is the center of our National Security Policy. He questioned that in this situation how can we talk with trade with India when the BJP-led Modi government was involved in the killings of thousands of innocent Kashmiris as well as other minority ethnic communities. A just and peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with UNSC resolutions has been declared a vital security interest for the country.

National Security Adviser (NSA) Dr Moeed Yusuf said that the NSP has taken a broad view of national security as both traditional and non-traditional issues impacted our security.

“While the National Security Policy is centered around economic security, the geo-strategic and geo-political imperatives also feature prominently to strengthen Pakistan security and standing in the world”.

He highlighted that this was a document finalised after a complete civil-military consensus.

The policy emphasises a geo-economic vision to supplement the focus on geostrategy and highlights that the foremost aim of Pakistan’s foreign policy and military capability was peace and stability in the region and beyond, based on mutual respect and sovereign equality.

The policy is aimed at addressing three critical economic challenges, external imbalance, socio-economic inequalities, and geographic disparities between developed and under-developed regions of Pakistan.

The document emphasises the non-negotiable focus on the defense and territorial integrity of Pakistan, strengthening space-based technology and its application, and combating hybrid warfare through enhancing information and cyber security.

Regarding internal security, Moeed said that the policy seeks to ensure writ of the state across the country, zero-tolerance towards terrorism, extremism, and violent sub-nationalisms, and fighting the menace of organised crimes.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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