The devastating attack on the Peshawar Army Public School in December spurred Pakistan’s government, led by the Ministry of the Interior, to draft a 20-point National Action Plan against terrorism. The Honorable Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Pakistan’s minister of the interior, outlined the plan and his country’s terrorism challenge on February 18, his first public appearance in Washington since taking office in June 2013.
Since the Peshawar school attack, which killed more than 150 people, including 134 children, the Pakistani government has pledged to make this the turning point, targeting terrorists of all types. A number of major steps have already been taken.
The country’s federal interior ministry, which has responsibility for addressing domestic terrorism, last year produced Pakistan’s first National Internal Security Policy. The new National Action Plan sets out further ambitious goals to curtail terrorist financing; coordinate intelligence sharing across federal, provincial, and military police and security agencies; and create dedicated counterterrorism forces, among other steps.
Will Pakistan be able to act upon these policy decisions, and will it be able to turn the corner in this long and bloody fight against terrorism? Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan assessed Pakistan’s counterterrorism efforts and the challenges ahead.
Honorable Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Speaker
Minister of Interior, Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Moeed Yusuf, Introductory Remarks and Moderator
Director of South Asia Programs, U.S. Institute of Peace