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Pakistan pledges fight against ‘all terrorists without any discrimination of hue and color’

January 20th, 2015
09:50 AM ET

By Madalena Araujo, CNN

Pakistan is fighting against all types of terrorists and their respective accomplices, the country’s Army spokesman told Christiane Amanpour in an interview that aired Monday.

“Now coming to now, Pakistan is very clear, very determined. There are no good terrorists. There is no collusion. We are absolutely clear, no confusion in our mind. We are going against all terrorists without any discrimination of hue and color,” Major General Asim Bajwa said.

“So I think there is no confusion in our mind that we have to go against the phenomenon of terrorism, against all terrorists, and their abettors.”

Major General Bajwa admitted there “was a time who all raised, fed, trained and used these people,” when Amanpour questioned him over Pakistan’s years long support for militant groups allegedly based on political and strategic reasons.

The country suffered the deadliest Taliban attack on its soil on December 16, which left 145 dead, most of them children, after gunmen opened fire in a school for the children of military personnel in Peshawar. Pupils and teachers returned to the school for the first time last week.

“There is a lot more security at the national level” Bajwa told Amanpour, and “a review of security at every level.”

“I think it is very difficult to guarantee that nothing of this kind happens anywhere in the world. We just saw what happened in Paris. We have seen school shootouts in places like America, which is the most developed democracy of the world and it's a very good functioning system.”

The Pakistan Taliban claimed responsibility for the bloodbath, calling it a revenge attack after Pakistan’s army forces launched a major military offensive against them in June.

Major General Bajwa maintained that the country’s military is capable of combating terrorism.

“However, if you see the nature of this conflict, you see the U.S. forces in Iraq, then in Afghanistan, they've been there for so long, you look at the ISAF [the International Security Assistance Force, the NATO-led security mission in Afghanistan] forces, the scale and magnitude of the forces and resources which are employed, and look at the performance of Pakistani forces, they have done an excellent job. “

“They have been so effective and we've achieved the desired results. And we are expanding it. We will go to the last terrorist and we will eliminate terrorism totally from our soil.”

Pakistan has reintroduced the death penalty in the aftermath of the school massacre and established special military courts to prosecute, judge and try terror suspects. At least 16 people have been executed since then.

The move has been criticized by human rights groups, who say capital punishment might be seen as revenge and that it doesn’t tackle the underlying causes of Islamist extremism.

Amanpour asked Pakistan’s Army spokesman if he’s concerned about the potential blowback of these executions.

"There is always a chance of blowback. So now that the military has been mandated, it has a sunset clause for two years. But there is also a criminal justice reform which is underway. So this military court is a stopgap arrangement which has now been given to the military for a period of two years.”

Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour • Latest Episode • Pakistan
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