Pakistan Reader# 664, 8 September 2023
On 7 September, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Asim Munir presided the 259th Corps Commander Meeting. The conference consisted of Army top brass reiterating their resolve to protect Pakistan from multitudinous threats of direct or indirect nature. The gathering comes in light with the Army cracking down against the dollar hoarders to stabilize the dwindling exchange rate of Pakistan. The recent actions against foreign currency smuggling have led to a remarkable rise in the rupee value by three per cent against the US dollar. This had a ripple affect against the value of gold reduction by 4.5 per cent. Also, there has been a surge in militant activities at the border crossing from Afghanistan, where the army aims to curb the infiltration of these bellicose groups. They noted that the Afghan governments negates from fulfilling its responsibilities and refutes the allegation of Afghan soil being used to perpetuate acts of violence in Pakistan.
The gathering first paid tribute to army officials who lost their lives in protecting the country and expressed that the soldiers and their families will be kept in high regards. The meeting briefed on the geo-strategic environment and the hurdles they face in protecting their National Security. There was a unanimous agreement against the “facilitators and abettors” to face the full might and stringent measures imposed by the army. Additionally, the army elites reaffirmed that “inimical propogandists” efforts to destabilase the country by attempting to create differences between the state and public will be fraught with humiliation, stated Inter Service Public Relations of Pakistan (ISPR).
On the revival of the economy and the need for development, the Army announced its full support for the socio-economic development under the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC). They further affirmed their determination to assist the government in cracking down against any illegal activities that might have a causal effect on destabilizing the economy and hampering investors’ confidence. SIFC was formed under Shehbaz Sharif administration, a civil- military body aiming to invite international investments in the areas of mining, agriculture and minerals. Additionally, Interim Prime Minister Anwaar -ul-Haq Kakar announced that UAE and Saudi Arabia have agreed to invest USD 25 billion each on projects under SIFC. A differential focus was given for the expedite development of Newly Merged Districts (NMDs) and Border Districts of Balochistan in order to facilitate sustainable peace and growth.
“Army to help govt curb activities against economic stability,” The News International, 8 September 2023
“Army not to compromise on security or economy,” Dawn, 8 September 2023
“Pakistan army vows to assist government in foreign investments, curbing ‘illegal activities’ harming economy,” Arab News, 7 September 2023
“Pak authorities launch crackdown against dollar smuggling,” The Pioneer, 8 September 2023