In a world affected by repeated cycles of conflict, Pakistan – after successfully fighting the war on terror – continues making all efforts to build enduring peace cis-frontier and beyond. The peace and development taking shape in erstwhile FATA has become a success story in itself. In Balochistan, which has the potential to contribute to the development of Pakistan and could be the gateway to peace and development of the entire region, peace has been restored, leading to a considerable reduction in terrorism related incidents with readjustment focused on the socio-economic projects in the province. In its desire for peace on its eastern and western borders and towards its clear aim of peace and prosperity in the whole region, Pakistan’s tangible peace efforts have materialized and garnered attention of the whole world. The determination of the entire nation, steps taken by the government and sacrifices of the valiant heroes of Pakistan’s security forces including LEAs led to reversing the tide of terrorism. Today’s Pakistan has triumphed and shifted from being the victim of terrorism to a country with great promise for the coming years and decades.
The country has been garnering increasingly positive attention much like for its tourism industry, which after remaining dormant for many years is witnessing a great revival. Foreign tourists can now be directed to Pakistan safely, while the approval of visa on arrival for 5o countries and electronic visas for 175 nationalities would also serve as a prelude to increasing Pakistan's share in the global tourism market. The move is expected to play a role towards attracting foreign investment, and in turn improving the economic, environmental and socio-cultural development, as tourists' confidence in the country's law and order situation and infrastructure is seen as an important benchmark for attracting global investors. In this connection, foreign airlines' return to Pakistan and the plans to launch flights to Pakistan is an indicator of confidence in the improved security situation. Pakistan's desire for peace also depends on strong defence against its internal and external enemies. Given the hegemonic designs of the eastern neighbor, Pakistan's security forces are cognizant of the challenges and mindful of the security situation as well as the persistent perpetual threats associated with it. The ceasefire violations and targeting of civilians have increased in the last 10 years, raising the broader question of the resolution and regional implications of the unresolved conflict.
The induction of BMD system by India could put the strategic stability of South Asia into question, creating a volatile environment. To deal with the prevailing and evolving threat spectrum more effectively, the successful training launch of Nasr – a shoot and scoot weapon system with the ability of in-flight maneuverability – augmented Pakistan's Full Spectrum Deterrence posture remaining within the precincts of policy of Credible Minimum Deterrence. The all-rounded approach adopted by Pakistan focusing on growth in all sectors, defence and otherwise, has the potential to transform it into a country capable of prospering in the 21st century.
As we consolidate the dividends of peace and the various economic projects, both national and international, a new world of opportunities would open with improvement in the investment climate, tourism economy, job opportunities and country's overall economic condition. We must weed out pessimism and conflict, and continue to strengthen the pillars of governance, security and justice that contribute to consolidating peace.
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