Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday unveiled a public version of Pakistan’s first-ever citizen-centric National Security Policy (NSP), saying that an inclusive development is inevitable for national security.
The policy was approved by the federal cabinet on December 28 after getting nod of the National Security Committee.
Addressing the launching ceremony of the public version of the otherwise secret document, the prime minister said: “Inclusive growth means not only to uplift the poor people but also the neglected areas… (In such case) every common man becomes a stakeholder to protect the state… The biggest security is when people stand behind state for its protection.”
National Assembly speaker, federal ministers, Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee chairman, all services chiefs, diplomats, and senior civil and military officers attended the launching ceremony.
After signing the historic document, the premier appreciated the National Security Division for formulating a policy based on the consensus of the whole state and defining the national security in a “right manner”.
The NSP, which is first of its kind in Pakistan’s history, articulates a citizen-centric framework, placing economic security at its core and seeking a secure and economically resilient Pakistan.
The formulation process of the policy included multiple consultations with official stakeholders, including federal ministers, 120 experts, 300 students, and 600 people from all walks of life.
The prime minister said the NSP would also help correct the dimension and facilitate the whole government machinery to move in one direction for achieving national security and stability.
Our armed forces are our pride. Given the threats the country faces in the region and the growing threat of hybrid warfare, the armed forces would continue to receive even greater support and importance, he added.
The prime minister explained the significance of his government’s successful initiative of producing the NSP, calling it a major priority of his government.
He also highlighted the importance of the policy’s successful implementation and announced that the National Security Committee would regularly review progress, adding that the NSP centers on the government’s vision, which believes that the security of Pakistan rests in the security of its citizens.
Any national security approach must prioritise national cohesion and the prosperity of people, while guaranteeing fundamental rights and social justice without discrimination, he added.
He said in order to achieve the vast potential of the citizens, it is necessary to promote delivery-based good governance, adding that the foremost aim of the foreign policy and military capability would remain peace and stability in the region and beyond.
Our foreign policy would also focus much more on economic diplomacy going forward, he remarked.
The prime minister said the national security is also compromised when the country has to approach IMF to support its economy by accepting their conditions. In such a case, the common man has to face the burden, he added.
He also highlighted the government’s initiatives like interest-free loans for business, ration subsidy scheme, and housing construction loans to the low-income group.
He said for the first time, the government introduced a single national curriculum as in the past, the country had three parallel education systems.
Calling the rule of law a big challenge for the country, he said due to lack of the rule of law, the country could not tap its immense tourism potential in areas which are far bigger and more beautiful than Switzerland.
In his remarks, National Security Adviser Dr Moeed Yusuf briefly explained the NSP’s vision and thanked the prime minister and all officials for their constant support.
Calling it an umbrella document linking all issues of national security, Moeed said Pakistan is among a few countries who codified and publicised their security policies.
While the NSP is centered around economic security, the geo-strategic and geo-political imperatives also feature prominently to strengthen Pakistan’s security and standing in the world, he remarked.
He highlighted that this is a document, which was finalised after full civil-military consensus, adding that the policy also seeks to bring about good governance, which is vital to protect common man.
He said the National Security Division would provide monthly report to the National Security Committee on the implementation of the policy.
COAS appreciates NSP:
According to a news outlet, during an informal conversation with the media persons at the ceremony, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa appreciated the steps taken by the state to ensure the national security of the country and called the policy a “great step”.
He further said that military security is one aspect of the National Security Policy, adding that the document will help ensure the national security of the country.
With additional input from APP
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