The Nation: Following the attack on 14-year-old peace activist Malala Yousafzai, Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Kayani said that the Pakistani military would fight terrorism regardless of the cost. “In attacking Malala, the terrorists have failed to grasp that she is not only an individual, but an icon of courage and hope, who vindicates the great sacrifices that the people of Swat and the nation gave, for wresting the Swat Valley from the scourge of terrorism. She has become a symbol for the values that the Army, with the nation behind it, is fighting to preserve for our future generations, the COAS said.”
The Tribune: Imran Khan, the famous cricketer-turned-politician, has termed the ongoing war in Afghanistan a ‘jihad’, while condemning the attack on 14 year old Malala Yousafzai. “The PTI chief condemned the attack on Malala, saying attacking children was against the teachings of Islam and Pashtun traditions, and offered every possible help to Malala’s family.
Imran added that there was a need to investigate the motivations of various Taliban factions operating in the country, adding that the decision to carry out a military operation in Waziristan in 2004 and the Lal Masjid episode were ‘the main reasons’ behind the violence across the country.”
Business Recorder: Following a week of protest and social mobilization against drone attacks in Pakistan’s tribal regions, the US acting Ambassador to Pakistan has defended the use of UAV’s. “Talking to media persons here, the US embassy’s charge d’affaires backed the continued CIA drone operation in the country’s tribal belt particularly in North Waziristan. The statement of the US diplomat in Pakistan came the day US drones fired eights missiles reportedly on a Taliban commander Molvi Abdullah’s house in Mirali, North Waziristan, killing at least five suspected militants.
Referring to the recent “Peace March” of Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) to South Waziristan against the drone attacks, he said that policies could not be changed on the basis of rallies. He further said that he also exchanged his views with a delegation comprising members of American civil society about the drone strikes. The US delegation representing the country’s civil society was also accompanying the anti-drone rally of the PTI.”
Daily Times: Political parties and civil society organizations have been condemning the terrorist attack on Malala Yousufzai. “They demanded a change in direction, which required a change in state policy at the highest level following by strict implementation. They argued that terrorism could not be defeated in the country until the state and army would not end its policy of differentiating between various Taliban, Jihadi and sectarian groups as all these groups were involved in violence in Pakistan.”
RTT News: The commander of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan has laid out a strategy to diminish ‘insider attacks’. “The strategy includes Enhanced training before deployment and in the field that emphasizes cultural awareness, counterintelligence techniques, vigilance and real-time information sharing; Adaptive levels of partnering based on continuous review of threat information; Expanded vetting and counterintelligence operations by coalition forces and Afghan partners; Constant emphasis on effective use of “guardian angels” and other protective measures to deter attackers and ensure a quick response when an attack begins; and Ongoing efforts to analyze attack patterns and develop stronger prevention methods.
Disclosing this at the NATO defense ministers’ conference in Brussels on Wednesday, US Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta said he believes these efforts, along with the full partnership of Afghan Defense Minister Bismillah Khan Mohammadi and Interior Minister Mujtaba Patang, will counter the threat.”
VIDEO: BBC News: There are signs that education provision for Afghani girls is improving.
The Hindu: “Delhi Police on Thursday claimed to have cracked an Indian Mujahideen module with the arrest of three persons, who were suspected to be involved in the low-intensity blasts in Pune two months ago.” The Elite Delhi police unit, Special Cell, also recovered arms and ammunition during the arrest.