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ISLAMABAD: Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Saturday said that those targeting innocent people would not be spared.

“It has been established that Afghan refugees have also been used during these terrorist incidents. I appeal to these refugees not to be used and identify those black sheep among them who facilitate terrorists and terrorist activities,” he stated while talking to journalists.

The Minister said the facilitators behind the Peshawar and Lahore incidents have been identified and an investigation into recent terrorist attacks has established that a coordinated effort was being made to disrupt peace in the country. He added that it has become clear that foreign powers and their intelligence agencies were involved in creating unrest in Pakistan.

The Minister stated that during a recent security meeting, it was decided that diplomatic consideration would not impede actions aimed at ensuring national security and peace.

He noted that Pakistan has been hosting Afghan refugees for the last 30 years and the state has looked after them despite its own problems. It is now the responsibility of the Afghan refugees to identify suspicious individuals and those with the intent to disrupt the peace in Pakistan.

The Minister affirmed that the main facilitator of the Lahore terrorist attack has been arrested. More arrests were made last night from Hazro, Taxila, and Attock.

Furthermore, he praised the work of intelligence agencies that had worked hard to arrest not just the main facilitator of the attack, but all those who were linked with attacks in Lahore within 24 hours.

He declared that the civil and military leadership in Pakistan has decided to deal with the recent wave of terrorism with iron hands. The decision was taken during meetings held in the wake of recent terrorist incidents in the country.

Stressing the need for national unity at this hour, the Minister said, “The same spirit and unity is needed today which was displayed by the nation after the APS attack. Our unity and resolve is our real strength.”

He pointed out that the government had improved in combatting situations since on daily basis, 5-6 terrorist attacks used to take place in June 2013.

He maintained that the policies of the government pursued during the last three years and continued operations against militants had halted the terrorists and their actions in Pakistan. The fight against militants had forced them to flee from Pakistan and build their headquarters and training centers across the border in foreign countries.

Regarding the blast in Sehwan, Nisar believed a significant breakthrough is yet to be made into the incident. He, however, observed that it was unfortunate that some people, in order to hide their criminal negligence and poor performance, were politicizing this incident.

During the last three years, Nisar claimed he had strictly followed a principle not to blame anyone or attempt to score political points against his opponents over terrorist incidents, but statements issued during the last 24 hours by a few political leaders of a ‘particular party’ are highly regrettable. This, he continued, shows their performance and their mentality.

He said that he had witnessed poor security being provided at Sehwan Sharif but would refrain from commenting on it.