Spearhead Special Report – 30.03.2018
By Hira A. Shafi
Senior Research Analyst, Spearhead Research
The Ministry of Interior conducted a seminar on Internal Security, Peace and Sustainable Development on 27th March, 2018 in Islamabad. The aim of the seminar was to discuss the scope of National Security Policy 2014-2018, the National Action Plan and the upcoming National Security Policy 2018-2023.
The keynote address given by Minister of Interior – Mr Ahsan Iqbal – highlighted the regional security crisis that ensued since the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. In his view, the disinterested attitude of the bigger powers following the collapse of USSR, left Afghanistan as a victim of extremist ideologies from the Middle East, other radical ideologies from the West, abundance of ammunitions and poverty. The adverse realities directly impacted Pakistan – that was left alone to deal with millions of Afghan refugees and a regional drug crisis. He stated that no development is possible in the absence of peace. He highlighted the need for continued efforts in de-radicalising effected segments of society and effectively harnessing Pakistan’s youth bulge. While sharing his view on the results of non-military counter terror initiatives – he stated that the NISP 2014-2018 was overshadowed by the National Action Plan and a broader framework is required to harmonize the NAP with the upcoming NISP 2018-2023. He also stated that stances against ‘democracy’ and maligning political leaders sets an in correct counter narrative for extremist ideologies.