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HRCP calls for NAP review

LAHORE, 21 JAN (DNA) – While strongly condemning the Charsadda terrorist attack the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has called for a critical reappraisal of the operations against terrorists and a more stringent implementation of the National Action Plan, especially the agenda for dealing with centres and organizations responsible for the training of and assistance to terrorist groups.

In a statement issued here today the commission said: “The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) shares the nation’s shock and grief at the terrorist attack on the Bacha Khan University in Charsadda and conveys its condolences to the families of the 20 innocent persons, 18 of them young students, who were gunned down by the raiders.

The incident should be most vigorously condemned for several reasons. First, as in the case of the attack on the Army Public School in Peshawar, the terrorists targeted students, that is, the future of Pakistan, and that shows how great enemies of Pakistani people they are. Secondly, this is the third major incident of terrorism within as many weeks and it confirms that the terrorists still enjoy the freedom to attack wherever they wish. And, thirdly, this incident should be taken as a continuation of the war the terrorists have been waging against the Awami National Party (ANP) for its nationalist, secular and anti-extremism policies, in the course of which it has lost hundreds of activists and sympathisers.

“Pakistan will invite greater perils if the lessons of the latest wave of terrorism are not heeded. The fact that ANP is under extremists’ attack should not make other political parties complacent. Their turn might also come and perhaps sooner than expected. All parties must therefore wholeheartedly join the struggle against terrorism. In particular, the KP government should reconsider its policy of weaning the extremists away from violence by offering them milk and honey. Secondly, the emphasis should shift from turning educational institutions into military garrisons to attacking the sources of threats.

While the security forces’ prompt response to the Charsadda attack is heartening, a critical reappraisal of the military operation against the terrorists cannot be deferred. This much is also clear from the Senate resolution on the subject. Above all, the National Action Plan will not yield the desired result without a crackdown on institutions and groups that train terrorists or help them otherwise.” DNA   

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