Sunday, August 18, 2013

Upbeat about future: If KP govt flops, PTI flops says Imran - The Express Tribune

"Milita­ry action should be the last resort if talks and reconc­iliati­on fail," says PTI chief.

Hitting out at the ANP for criticising the PTI for the volatile security situation in the province, Imran said terror attacks were rampant even during the ANP-led administration in K-P. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: 

The last two months have been particularly bloody for the militancy-wrecked Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. The Shergarh funeral attack and the massive jailbreak in Dera Ismail Khan paint a picture of doom and gloom in the province governed by Imran Khan's Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI).

At the same time, JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, who appears to be hell bent to discredit the PTI administration, has also unleashed a fresh salvo of allegations against the party chief.

"A concerted effort is under way to portray the K-P government as a failure," Imran told The Express Tribune in an exclusive interview. "No one is talking about the good things that are happening. We, a party that has come to power for the first time in the country's history, have only been in power for two months! We are just asking for another month … you just watch the kind of changes we bring."

Hitting out at the Awami National Party (ANP) for criticising the PTI for the volatile security situation in the province, Imran said terror attacks were rampant even during the ANP-led administration in K-P.

"I should be worried the most, because if K-P flops, the PTI flops. But I'm not worried … in the coming month you will see us introduce legislation that does not exist in Pakistan," he said.

Asked about the DI Khan jailbreak in which around 250 inmates escaped, the PTI chief blamed the police and elite force. "The intelligence was there … police were prepared, the army was on board," he said. "But the elite force did not fire a shot and the army did not do anything either… no one did anything."

"The question we need to ask is 'why did they not act?'… It is alarming," Imran said. The police are not properly trained and equipped to fight 'highly-trained' terrorists, who often have night-vision goggles, he added. "They are demoralised because so many of their comrades have been killed."

The PTI chief has also demanded that paramilitary Frontier Corps troops be deployed to combat the 'sophisticated terrorists' since the police could not handle organised attacks.

But while he referred to the DI Khan attackers as 'terrorists', he did not explicitly hold the Taliban, despite the group's own claim, responsible for the attack.

"This is a very complex situation. There are 20 splintered groups with a loose Shura [that we refer to as Taliban]," he said. "This [the Taliban] are not a monolith … there are franchises … there are mafias who kidnap people and exchange them with other groups, there are foreign-funded Taliban and there are ideological Taliban who are using suicide attacks to wage jihad against the US war."

He reiterated that dialogue was the only solution to the problem. "You need to have a ceasefire. The government has made the right decision to distance itself from the US war. Military action should be the last resort if talks and reconciliation fail," he said.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 19th, 2013.

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