NCA Reiterates Pakistan’s Policy of Developing and Maintaining Full Spectrum Deterrence
NCA Fully Endorses Both National Space Programme-2047 and Nuclear Power Programme
23rd meeting of the National Command Authority (NCA) was held under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi on December 21, 2017. The meeting was attended by the Federal Ministers of Defence and Interior, Chairman JSC, Chief of Army Staff, Chief of Naval Staff, Chief of Air Staff, Director General Strategic Plans Division, Director General Inter Services Intelligence, Secretary Foreign Affairs and other senior officials.
The NCA was briefed comprehensively on the strategic environment. It took stock of the regional security environment and in this regard, noted with concern certain destabilizing actions in Pakistan’s neighborhood which undermine the objective of maintaining strategic stability in South Asia. These include the massive arms build-up in the conventional domain, nuclearization of the Indian Ocean Region and plans for the development/deployment of ballistic missile defence (BMD).
While expressing full confidence in Pakistan’s capability to address any form of aggression, the NCA reiterated Pakistan’s policy of developing and maintaining Full Spectrum Deterrence in line with the policy of Credible Minimum Deterrence and avoidance of arms race. The NCA congratulated the scientists and engineers on their contributions to strengthen national defence capabilities. It appreciated the technological sophistication demonstrated during the tests of Babur III SLCM and Ababeel Missile System, which have ushered a new era in technological sophistication of Pakistan’s strategic capabilities.
The NCA took a detailed review of the nuclear security regime and expressed full confidence in command and control systems and security measures in place to ensure comprehensive stewardship and security of strategic assets and materials. It re-affirmed that as a responsible nuclear state Pakistan would continue to contribute meaningfully towards the global efforts to improve nuclear security and nuclear non-proliferation measures.
The NCA appreciated the high standards of training and operational readiness of the strategic forces to meet all kinds of threats. It also asserted that Pakistan desires peaceful co-existence in the region and will endeavor to work with its neighbors to ensure strategic stability in South Asia.
The NCA noted with satisfaction the implementation of national comprehensive export control measures which are in line with international export control regimes. It reiterated that Pakistan has the requisite credentials to become part of various non-proliferation regimes, including the NSG, for which Pakistan seeks adoption of a non-discriminatory criteria based approach.
The NCA was also briefed on National Space Programme-2047 and Nuclear Power Programme for peaceful uses of nuclear technology to meet growing energy needs. NCA fully endorsed both these programmes as these are essential for future national socio-economic prosperity and growth. NCA particularly noted the potential of space programme in almost all current and emerging civilian sectors, ensuring resource generation and optimization. The role of nuclear applications in the fields of health, agriculture, medicine and industry was deeply appreciated. The NCA reaffirmed Pakistan’s interest in expanding international cooperation in these areas and playing a positive role towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals as a provider of expertise and services in peaceful nuclear application.
Air Chief Inaugurates Shooter Squadron at PAF Base M. M. Alam
The inauguration ceremony of Shooter Squadron was held at PAF Base M.M. Alam (Mianwali) on December 11, 2017. Air Chief Marshal Sohail Aman, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force was the chief guest at the occasion. Veterans and a large number of retired and serving officers also attended the ceremony.
Addressing the audience at the occasion, the Air Chief said that ‘the concepts of the future fighter pilots have to be embedded in a manner that they go from this squadron to high-tech fighter aircraft and quickly embrace those concepts’. He added that ‘the pilots being trained there should adapt to an exhaustive academic and flying curriculum under the supervision of the finest of the instructor pilots’. He further said that ‘their job is onerous and very important as fighter pilots and support elements and this edge must remain very sharp’.
In his opening address, Air Commodore Tanvir Ashraf, Base Commander PAF Base M.M. Alam talked about the significance of this squadron in grooming and training of young pilots. A well crafted documentary highlighting the importance of this squadron in PAF was also shown during the ceremony. The Air Chief inaugurated the squadron by unveiling the plaque of this newly formed squadron. Later on, the Air Chief interacted with the squadron personnel and urged them to put in their best in training the future fighter pilots of Pakistan Air Force.
‘Shooter Squadron’ is an innovative idea of establishing a temporary flying squadron which would serve as a lead in fighter training. It would provide ample opportunities to the young pilots to polish their flying skills and bridging the gap between low-tech and medium tech aircraft. Training at this squadron would give the future air warriors enough confidence to ultimately undergo their conversions on state of the art F-16 and JF-17 Thunder aircraft.