Pakistan ready to respond to foreign aggression — Army spokesman

In this file photo, Pakistan’s army spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor speaks with media representatives during a press conference in Rawalpindi on April 17, 2017. (AFP)
Updated 23 September 2018
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Pakistan ready to respond to foreign aggression — Army spokesman

  • Desire for peace should not be misconstrued as our weakness, says Pakistan military spokesman
  • We reject warmongering by ruling elite of India, Pakistan’s information minister says

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is “ready for war” and capable of responding to any foreign aggression, military spokesman Maj. Gen. Asif Ghafoor said on Saturday.
“We are ready for war but choose to walk the path of peace in the interest of the people of Pakistan, the neighbors and the region,” he said.
Earlier on Saturday, Indian Army Chief Gen. Bipin Rawat threatened to take “stern action” in response to the killing of an Indian Border Security Force (BSF) soldier. “I think the other side (Pakistan) must also feel the same pain,” he said.
Rawat’s statement came a day after India called off talks between the two countries’ foreign ministers, citing the killing of the BSF soldier as one of the reasons.
Ghafoor called Rawat’s statement “irresponsible,” saying: “India should not disturb the peace process.”
Ghafoor said Pakistan is a nuclear power, and its desire for peace should not be misconstrued as weakness.
Islamabad’s “offer still stands for India to come forward and hold talks with us,” he added, denying that the Pakistani Army was responsible for the killing of the BSF soldier.
Pakistani Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry on Saturday tweeted that India is resorting to “warmongering” to deflect attention from “increasing calls” for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s resignation over corruption allegations. 
The president of the opposition Pakistan Muslim League — Nawaz (PML-N), Shehbaz Sharif, said the world should immediately take note of India’s threatening posture.
“Pakistan extending an olive branch to India, should never be misconstrued as weakness,” he tweeted.
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan tweeted on Saturday: “Disappointed at the arrogant and negative response by India to my call for resumption of the peace dialogue. However, all my life I have come across small men occupying big offices who do not have the vision to see the larger picture.”


Saudi Arabia to make biggest investment in Pakistan’s history – Umar

Updated 13 December 2018
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Saudi Arabia to make biggest investment in Pakistan’s history – Umar

  • Finance Minister says Islamabad has already received the first installment of the $1bn support package extended by Riyadh
  • Kingdom has also shown an interest in country’s largest coastal refinery

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Finance Minister Asad Umar said on Thursday that an incoming investment package from Saudi Arabia had the potential to be “the biggest foreign investment in the country’s history”, reports in the Pakistani media said.
While addressing an event in Islamabad, Umar said: “The ball is in our court. It is going to the cabinet for approval next week, after which the announcement will be made.”
Following Prime Minister Imran Khan’s maiden visit to the Kingdom in September this year, a high-level Saudi delegation had visited Pakistan to discuss economic ties and investment opportunities.
Later, during PM Khan’s second visit to the country in October, both Pakistan and Saudi Arabia signed an agreement under which the Kingdom agreed to place a deposit of $3 billion for a period of one year to support Islamabad in its balance of payment crisis.
Both countries had also agreed that a one-year deferred payment facility for imported oil, up to $3 billion, will be provided by Saudi Arabia. This arrangement will be in place for three years, which will be reviewed thereafter.
Pakistan has already received the first tranche of $1 billion under the balance of payments support package extended by Saudi Arabia in November, with the second and third installments to be received in the next two months.
In recent months, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have agreed to enhance their business and trade ties.
Saudi Arabia has also shown an interest to invest in Pakistan’s largest coastal refinery, a multibillion-dollar project being set up at Khalifa Point, near Hub in Balochistan. The details were confirmed to Arab News last month by Sher Afghan Khan, spokesman for the Ministry of Energy (petroleum division) and a board member of the Pak-Arab Refinery Limited (PARCO).