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Opposition Leaders Condemn Defence Minister’s Cross-Border Strike Statement, Demand Apology

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Senior members of the opposition in the National Assembly have strongly criticized Defence Minister Khawaja Asif’s recent declaration of possible cross-border strikes in Afghanistan and have demanded an apology. The statement, deemed “irresponsible” by the opposition, has been condemned as potentially escalating tensions and endangering the fragile peace and brotherly relations between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly, Omar Ayub Khan, emphasized that the defence minister’s remarks have the potential to spark a wave of terrorism and reverse the efforts made towards regional stability and peace. Calling for a focus on dialogue and collaboration with Afghanistan to combat terrorism, Khan stressed that threats of unilateral military action are not the solution.

The opposition leaders, including PTI chairman Barrister Gohar and PTI’s former NA speaker Asad Qaiser, met in the Opposition Lobby in the National Assembly to express their concerns. Qaiser described the defence minister’s statement as not just irresponsible, but as a dangerous provocation that could further destabilize the region. He emphasized the need for mutual cooperation and respect to ensure peace and security.

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The opposition leaders highlighted the deep ties between Pakistan and Afghanistan, stressing that such incendiary remarks do not reflect the sentiments of the people of Pakistan. They expressed that any threat of military action undermines the spirit of cooperation and mutual respect and demanded an immediate retraction of the statement and a formal apology from Khawaja Asif.

Furthermore, the Central Apex Committee of the National Action Plan (NAP) announced the plan to launch vision Azm-e-Istehkam to eliminate militant violence in the country. This move faced criticism from opposition parties, who demanded that the matter should have first been discussed in parliament.

In conclusion, the opposition leaders collectively urged the government to adopt a more diplomatic and measured approach to addressing security concerns, emphasizing the importance of policies that reflect a commitment to peace.

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