Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid has acknowledged that the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has ramped up its attacks across the country, but added that the government would not negotiate with the terrorist group again.
The minister said that the government would remain on high alert amidst the increased terror threat and investigate the recent terrorism spike. He also confirmed that the government would not negotiate with the banned outfit, saying any demands from the TTP would be impossible for the government to accept.
Law enforcement agencies killed two of the terrorists involved in the attack on a police check post in Islamabad last month, Rashid said. TTP had claimed responsibility for the attack.
Fielding questions during a press conference in Islamabad, Rashid also reported that approximately 70 Afghan citizens were arriving in Pakistan each day, explaining that, “there is no condition for visa for the sick people coming from Afghanistan.”
He also reported that in 2021, 87 new National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) offices had been opened across the country, including 23 new offices in Punjab, 18 in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, 11 in Sindh and 13 each in Balochistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).
The minister’s comments bookend what was a violent month for Pakistan. In January, 42 civilians and security personnel were killed in terrorist attacks across the country.
Islamabad-based think tank Pakistan Institute for Conflict and Security Studies (PICSS) reported that the number of violent attacks in January 2022 decreased to 24 from 28 the previous month, although the rate of deaths and injuries increased by 15 per cent and 37 per cent respectively, compared to December 2021.