Post Marriott attack, Pakistan forms high-level security panel

September 24th, 2008 - 3:13 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Sep 24 (IANS) Shaken by the Marriott Hotel suicide bombing, Pakistan has constituted a high-level panel to review the existing disaster management set up, identify shortfalls and recommend corrective measures.Presiding over a meeting here Tuesday on the security scenario in the country, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani asked the committee to particularly focus on the threat to the federal capital.

Headed by the adviser to the prime minister on interior Rehman Malik, the committee includes Law Minister Farooq H. Naek, Interior Secretary Syed Kamal Shah, the Rawalpindi Corps Commander as well as the heads of the Inter-Services Intelligence, Intelligence Bureau and the Federal Investigation Agency. Besides, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Salman Faruqui and the secretaries of the information and foreign affairs ministries and former interior minister Lt. Gen. (retd) Hamid Nawaz Khan are also part of the panel.

In its first meeting Tuesday, “the committee, besides the Marriott blast and the security of the federal capital, also discussed the overall security situation in the country”, The News said Wednesday.

“It would submit its report to the prime minister within three days (by Friday) on a strategy to meet the security threat to the capital in the wake of the Marriott hotel attack,” the newspaper added.

Gilani said the government would provide the necessary resources to the law enforcement agencies to enable them to effectively deal with acts of terrorism and create a sense of security for the people of Pakistan.

Underscoring the need for minimising the response time in dealing with terror strikes, the prime minister said standard operating procedures should be laid down for efficiently handling challenging situations like the Marriott attack in the future.

Gilani also urged the ulema to project the true image of Islam to the general public and tell the people that acts like the hotel attack were not only against the spirit of Islam but also brought the country a bad name.

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