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Islamabad: 6th May 2022: Federal Minister for Planning, Development ; Special Initiatives Professor Ahsan Iqbal has directed to ensure security review meeting to be held every month on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).
The Minister gave the direction while chairing a meeting to review the security progress on CPEC projects. The meeting was attended by the Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Secretary Ministry of Interior, Secretary Ministry of Information and other relevant stakeholders. The Minister emphasized the need for building a safe and secure environment for CPEC and to effectively tackle kinetic/non-kinetic challenges.
;CPEC is a flagship project of Pakistan ; China Economic Cooperation which can enable Pakistan to become an industrial economy. It is unfortunate that the momentum of 2013-18 couldn;t be sustained,; said the Minister.
He also expressed concern that Pakistan;s side of CPEC;s Joint Working Group on Security has not been meeting frequently. He directed the Ministry of Interior to regularly convene its meetings on a monthly basis. As without a coordinated effort there can be gaps which must be filled, he added.
Minister Iqbal stated that National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) should function as per their laid down role and objectives to provide gov;t with in depth assessment of security challenges that are grounded in socio-economic of the country. It will help the government to expand its security lens by addressing socio-economic grievances of the people that may if left unaddressed translate into security challenges.
Our security lens must also focus on limiting the vulnerability of our youth towards violence, extremism and propaganda,; said the Minister who vowed to undertake measures to ensure that youth is not alienated in socioeconomic development process especially in less developed regions of Pakistan.
The Minister Iqbal also directed all line ministries to ensure that laid down security protocols are followed by Chinese working on CPEC. Furthermore, the Minister stated that propaganda against CPEC is an attempt to deny people of less developed regions in Pak from positive socio-economic externalizes that will stem from CPEC.
It is noted that after the recent incident in Karachi, the government had decided to ensure foolproof security of Chinese working across the country. The Minister also directed the Secretary Ministry of Information to engage local regional media so youth of Balochistan could be engaged.