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Kashmir is Pakistan’s Jugular Vein, Will Keep Supporting It: Pak Army Chief

Pakistan's newly appointed army chief General Raheel Sharif attends the change of command ceremony in with outgoing army chief General Ashfaq Kayani (not in picture) at army headquarters in Rawalpindi November 29, 2013. Pakistan named Sharif, a career infantry officer considered a moderate as army chief, on Wednesday as the country fights a Taliban insurgency and seeks accord with the United States on how to stabilise neighbouring Afghanistan. Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced that Raheel Sharif, brother of a war hero, would take charge of the world's sixth-largest army, with a formal handover from General Ashfaq Kayani on Friday.REUTERS/Mian Khursheed (PAKISTAN - Tags: POLITICS MILITARY)
Pakistan's newly appointed army chief General Raheel Sharif attends the change of command ceremony in with outgoing army chief General Ashfaq Kayani (not in picture) at army headquarters in Rawalpindi November 29, 2013. Pakistan named Sharif, a career infantry officer considered a moderate as army chief, on Wednesday as the country fights a Taliban insurgency and seeks accord with the United States on how to stabilise neighbouring Afghanistan. Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced that Raheel Sharif, brother of a war hero, would take charge of the world's sixth-largest army, with a formal handover from General Ashfaq Kayani on Friday.REUTERS/Mian Khursheed (PAKISTAN - Tags: POLITICS MILITARY)

Islamabad: Pakistan army chief General Raheel Sharif on Tuesday described Kashmir as Pakistan’s “jugular vein” and said Islamabad will continue to support the people of the Valley on the “diplomatic and ethical” fronts.

“We salute the great sacrifices of the people of Kashmir for their right of self-determination. The solution of the problem lies in the implementation of the resolutions of United Nations in this regard. Pakistan will continue to support Kashmir on the diplomatic and ethical fronts,” said the chief of army staff, addressing a ceremony held at General Headquarters in Rawalpindi to mark the country’s Defence Day.

General Raheel said Kashmir was Pakistan’s “jugular vein” and praised people of the Valley for rendering “innumerable sacrifices”.
The army chief asserted that “the defence of Pakistan is invincible”.

“I want to make it clear to all the enemies that the defence of Pakistan is already strong but now it has become invincible,” he was quoted as saying by the Express Tribune.

On the challenges the country is facing, he said: “I want to make it clear that we are fully aware of all covert and overt intrigues and intentions of our enemies. Be the challenge military or diplomatic; on the borders or within the cities, we know our friends and foes all too well.”

On Pakistan’s ties with China, the army chief said the greatest example of a relationship based on mutual respect and principle of equality in the region is the Pak-China friendship.

“China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is the paramount evidence of this relationship. I would like to assure that we shall not allow any external force to obstruct it and any such attempt will be dealt with iron hands,” he said.

General Raheel said the Operation Zarb-e-Azb against terrorists had achieved its objectives to confront terror, saying the armed forced will go to any limit to ensure Pakistan’s security.

He praised the military, police and other law enforcement agencies for their “utmost efforts” to establish law and order in the country.
“There is a need to implement the National Action Plan and break the nexus between corruption and terrorism to fully consolidate the successes of Operation Zarb-e-Azb in the entire country,” he added.

PTI

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