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Monday 25th September 2023 / 10 Rabiulawal 1445

Pakistan’s desire for peace must not be misunderstood: PAF chief

ISLAMABAD: Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan said that Pakistan’s desire for peace should not be misunderstood.

The air force marked the second anniversary of ‘Operation Swift Retort’ conducted on February 27, 2019 which resulted in the downing of two Indian planes that had violated Pakistani airspace. The ceremony started with a flypast of the air force’s fighter planes.

Addressing a ceremony at the Air Headquarters in Islamabad, the PAF chief termed the incident as a significant day for the whole nation. “PAF once again upheld its glorious legacy and deterred the aggressor who gravely miscalculated and challenged our sovereignty,” said the PAF chief.

The air chief said Pakistan had responded to the violation of airspace by Indian planes in a manner that “made our nation proud”, adding that the country’s air force “proved equal to the Quaid’s vision of being second to none and established our supremacy in the air”.

He appreciated the officers of the Pakistan Air Force for their professionalism, valour and commitment displayed in Operation Swift Retort.

He reiterated that Pakistan was a responsible and peace-loving country and its efforts for international peace, especially in Afghanistan, the Middle East and in UN peacekeeping missions were being acknowledged by the international community.

He said a manifestation of peace was witnessed through the unconditional return of captured Indian pilot Abhinandan Varthaman by the government of Pakistan.

“However, let me make it very clear that our desire for peace should not be misunderstood. In case of any misadventure, our response would be swift, resolute and unwavering.”

He appreciated the force for “remaining proactive in maintaining peace and deterring aggression despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic”, saying the air force was committed to increasing its potential for the defence of the country.

He also expressed support for Kashmiris, stressing that “it is time to bring an end to the atrocities and longest lockdown of more than 1.5 years”.

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