Zarb-E-Azb: The Fight For Peace

Jul 10, 2014 by     No Comments    Posted under: Cover Story, Spotlight

For around fifteen days now, the Pakistani armed forces have been battling with the evil that lurks in the mountains and villages of North Waziristan. Devoted to the cause, the soldiers have dedicated their lives to the preservation of peace in Pakistan by taking out the militant groups hiding in the North of the country. ‘Zarb-e-Azb’, the military operation intended to flush out the terrorists which have formed their abode in this area, has been underway since the 15th of June 2014. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has stated that the operation shall continue until all terrorist groups have been eradicated and also that there shall be no sanctuary granted to any of the militants.

The soldiers of the Pakistan army have been engaged in combat with several terrorist organizations, mainly the Tehreek-e-Taliban, al-Qaeda, Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, East Turkestan Islamic Movement and various Afghan militant factions such as the Haqqani network. Afghan security forces have been requested to seal off the border on their side to prevent the militant groups from escaping into Afghan territory. Preparations for the operation had been on-going for quite some time and it was kept as a secondary option, in such a case that the peace talks with the terrorist organizations did not yield any results.

After the barbaric attack on Pakistan’s busiest airport in Karachi, for which the Tehreek-e-Taliban and Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan claimed responsibility, Pakistani armed forces launched the operation Zarb-e-Azb in North Waziristan. The assault on Jinnah International airport left 36 people dead, including all 10 militants involved in the attack.

The Pakistan Army has been supported whole-heartedly by the civilian population, which took to Twitter and other social media to show it’s faith in the Bahadurs of the Pak army. The operation has also united almost all leading political parties of Pakistan against the terrorist threat. The tribal elders of the Waziristan region have also pledged their support to the Pakistani armed forces. Over 100 Islamic scholars have unanimously agreed to declare Zarb-e-Azb as Jihad. It has garnered international appreciation as well, with countries such as the United States and Afghanistan commending the efforts of the Pakistan Army.

As of 1st July 2014, the number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) has reached approximately 468,000. The United Nations has been at work in the war-torn regions providing shelter and food for the IDPs. The World Health Organization (WHO) has also provided medicines and vaccines as there is fear of a polio outbreak. Urgent funding is required to facilitate a better humanitarian response.

So far, Zarb-e-Azb has resulted in 376 militants killed, while 19 have surrendered. Also, in the first phase of the operation, 61 militant hideouts have been wiped out. 17 soldiers have also reportedly lost their lives during combat. While the situation is tough, the Bahadurs of the Pakistan Army remain resilient in the face of adversity and continue to fight for the peace of their Nation. The people of Pakistan stand behind the armed forces with their full support and utmost respect for those fighting the terrorist threat and those who have lost their lives in doing so. Soldiers of Pakistan, we salute you.

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