Wednesday Mar 17, 2021
Prime Minister Imran Khan says it is vital to understand what national security is and that it is beyond just defence.
"National security is also about non-traditional issues like climate change and food security which threaten Pakistan and its overall security," the premier said after inaugurating on Wednesday Pakistan's first-ever security dialogue being held in Islamabad for two days.
The premier said the concept of national security needs to be more comprehensive. He spoke about the challenges of food security and climate change and stressed that this challenge will be given the most importance now.
"Security of the common citizen is one of the most important issues," the Prime Minister said.
He said the key to peace for this region lies in Afghanistan. “Pakistan is committed to doing everything it can to facilitate the Afghan peace process,” the premier said.
He lauded China’s economic policies in alleviating poverty and highlighted the Ehsaas programme in Pakistan for such ventures.
"China has brought out 700 million people from the poverty line. We have to follow the Chinese model to eradicate poverty from our state." the premier said.
Without regional peace and improved trade ties with neighbouring countries, Pakistan cannot capitalize on its geostrategic location, PM Khan said.
Talking about India and Kashmir, he said Pakistan hopes to give Kashmiris the right to self determination given to them by the UN Security Council, which will be beneficial to both Pakistan and India.
The conference aims to define the country’s new strategic direction in line with PM Khan's vision of peace, regional connectivity and development partnerships with the world.
It is called Islamabad Security Dialogue and is being organised by the National Security Division in collaboration with its advisory board, comprising five leading think tanks of the country.
The think tanks are: Centre for Aerospace and Security Studies, Islamabad Policy Research Institute, Institute of Strategic Studies, Institute of Regional Studies and National Defence University's Institute of Strategic Studies, Research and Analysis.
Chief of the Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa will be a keynote speaker tomorrow.
Top scholars and diplomats are participating in the summit. You can watch it on the official Twitter account.
At the event, the Prime Minister also launched the first of its kind advisory portal of the National Security Division.
This portal will be an integrated platform through which major think tanks and universities working on the subject of national security will be able to share policy recommendations directly with the national leadership.