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Thursday, May 23, 2024

Army “had nothing to do with the electoral process,” ISPR

The ISPR affirmed the military’s satisfaction with the smooth transition of power post-election, expressing hope for ensuing political and economic stability.

The military’s senior leadership expressed deep concern on Tuesday regarding certain sections of the political sphere and social media platforms that were casting aspersions on the armed forces with unfounded accusations of interference in the electoral process. This observation arose during the 263rd Corps Commanders’ Conference convened at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, under the chairmanship of Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Asim Munir.

This statement follows allegations from various political parties including PTI, Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl, and Grand Democratic Party questioning the legitimacy of the recent elections. In his initial press briefing post the February 8 polls, Maulana Fazlur Rehman of JUI-F had accused the establishment of persisting interference in the democratic process.

According to a press release by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the forum acknowledged the role of the armed forces in providing a secure environment for the General Election 2024 but firmly asserted their detachment from the electoral proceedings.  “In this regard, malicious efforts to create distortions, confusion and disinformation are absolutely futile and only part of an organised campaign being launched for narrow political interests, to blur the abhorrent activities that took place,” it said.They expressed dismay at a minority within the political and media landscape, particularly on social media platforms, for tarnishing the reputation of the Pakistani Armed Forces with baseless accusations of interference, condemning such actions as highly regrettable.

Instead of addressing pressing issues such as governance, economic recovery, political stability, and public welfare, the forum lamented that certain groups were solely focused on destabilizing the political landscape by shifting blame onto others for their own shortcomings.

“May 9” will be brought to justice 

The military leadership stressed the importance of adhering to legal procedures, presenting evidence, and avoiding unconstitutional and unsubstantiated political rhetoric or emotional outbursts. The ISPR affirmed the military’s satisfaction with the smooth transition of power post-election, expressing hope for ensuing political and economic stability.

Furthermore, they reiterated their commitment to democratic consolidation and acknowledged the efforts of civil administration, law enforcement agencies, and security forces during the elections despite challenges. The statement emphasized the military’s resolve to bring to justice those involved in the desecration of martyrs’ monuments and attacks on military installations on May 9, 2023, under the relevant legal provisions and constitutional framework.

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“In this regard, malicious efforts to create distortions, confusion and disinformation are absolutely futile and only part of an organised campaign being launched for narrow political interests, to blur the abhorrent activities that took place,” it said.

The ISPR denounced attempts to spread misinformation and fake news, urging unity among the Pakistani people for progress and development while assuring continued defense and service to the nation for enduring stability, prosperity, and security.