Prime Minister
Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Message to the Pakistani Diaspora

Dear brothers and sisters,

In my address to the Nation on 7 May 2009, I informed all Pakistanis that the armed forces of Pakistan had been ordered to launch operations against militants and terrorists in Swat and Malakand.

The Government of Pakistan cannot permit the continuation of the situation brought about by the activities of militants and extremists. We are determined to protect the life and property of all our people at all cost. There will be no compromise on Pakistan ís sovereignty and independence.

The PPP led Government has always pursued the path of reconciliation. We took seriously the situation in Swat and made all efforts to resolve the issue through dialogue. We respected the agreement signed by the NWFP Government. The parliament gave its consent to the agreement. The President then signed it. The agreement envisaged the enforcement of Nizam-e-Adl Regulations to assure peace and justice to the people of Swat. The militants were to lay down their arms. They did not keep their part of the agreement and started taking hostile actions against the constitution, parliament, democracy and judiciary which amounted to challenging the writ of the government. Their actions and rhetoric against women and girls were reprehensible.

The aggressive actions of the militants have forced hundreds of thousands of people in Swat Valley and in other parts of NWFP to migrate from their homes to elsewhere in Pakistan . These Pakistani brothers and sisters, young and elderly, deserve our full attention and care. The Government has taken immediate steps to address this humanitarian situation. This includes: (a) provision of Rs. One billion to the NWFP Government for rehabilitation; (b) commitment to provide employment to one member of the family that lost a member to the barbarity of the militants. I have also asked for international support for assistance to these displaced persons.

While the Government is committed to meet all needs, our resources are limited. I call upon all my Pakistani brothers and sisters to assist the Government of Pakistan in helping the internally displaced from Swat and other parts of the NWFP.

The Prime Ministerís Relief Fund for the internally displaced from Swat/NWFP has been set up. I urge you to make generous contributions to help these displaced brethren. Also, I have set up a special task force to coordinate a comprehensive strategy aimed at meeting the relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction requirements of the internally displaced. You may also wish to provide support in kind.

At this critical moment in the history of Pakistan , all Pakistanis must show their resolve to combat militancy, terrorism and extremism. Let us prove, once again, that we as a nation are united to support the armed forces and the Government of Pakistan to defeat the designs of those who want to take the Pakistan of Quaid-e-Azam and Allama Iqbal hostage. Let us work together to realize the vision of Pakistan as a moderate, progressive and forward-looking democratic Islamic state.

Islamabad

May 2009