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Pak adds new force to safeguard nuclear arsenal

world Updated: Apr 02, 2012 21:44 IST
Special Response Force

The new Special Response Force created to protect Pakistan's nuclear arsenal held a passing out parade today, with a top official saying that "all available resources" had been put in place to effectively guard the strategic assets.

The newly raised Special Response Force will be part of the security force of the Strategic Plans Division, which is responsible for maintaining the nuclear arsenal.

The passing out parade at the SPD Training Academy near Rawalpindi was reviewed by SPD chief, Lt Gen (retired) Khalid Ahmed Kidwai.

Kidwai said "all available resources have been put in place to safeguard the national strategic assets of the country comprehensively", according to a military statement.

The addition of the Special Response Force to SPD's security force "marked the achievement of a qualitative milestone in its rapid response capability", he said.

He highlighted the new force's responsibilities, saying: "You were chosen, well trained and have been tasked to perform a very important task, and I am sure, if ever challenged, your response actions will serve to make an example of any potential aggressor".

The military statement said this was the "first ever specialised force" to pass out of the SPD Training Academy.

The training was provided by highly qualified instructors from Pakistan's elite Special Services Group and other experts in security and crisis management.

The Pakistani military has been bolstering the strength of the SPD and its security force since last year.

The military has announced that it will induct an additional 8,000 personnel in the SPD to deter "all types of threats" to the country's nuclear weapons and materials.

Hundreds of personnel have completed their training since then.

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