Zardari says Pak's desire for peace not 'sign of weakness'
Warning that Pakistan's desire for peace should not be seen as "a sign of weakness", President Asif Ali Zardari on Monday said the country's armed forces are ready to tackle all challenges and "external and internal" threats.world Updated: Jan 04, 2010 16:47 IST
Warning that Pakistan's desire for peace should not be seen as "a sign of weakness", President Asif Ali Zardari on Monday said the country's armed forces are ready to tackle all challenges and "external and internal" threats.
"Pakistan is a peace-loving nation. We believe in peace with honour. However, our desire for peace must not be taken as a sign of weakness," he said in his address at a passing out parade at the naval academy here.
"Our national armed forces are ready to meet all challenges. They are ready to guard against all external and internal threats. It is our duty to fight against external and internal enemies who disrupt our peace, our progress and our efforts to bring prosperity to the people," Zardari said, without naming anyone.
Pakistan also does not want an arms race in the region, he said. "At the same time, however, we must remain prepared to meet any threat to our sovereignty."
He also described militancy and extremism as a "great threat" to Pakistan's existence and sought national commitment to defeat the menace, three days after 100 people died in a suicide car blast at a playground in the country's northwest.
"Pakistan faces new challenges to its security. Militancy and extremism are a new and great threat to our existence. We need a united national commitment to fight and defeat militancy," Zardari said.
On his arrival at the naval academy, Zardari was presented a guard of honour. He later reviewed the passing out parade and presented awards to cadets.