Osama raid left 'very deep imprint' on Pak armed forces

Ali, a retired lieutenant general, made the remarks while deposing before the inquiry commission probing the US raid and bin Laden's presence in the country.

He said no government department, the Defence Ministry, the Joint Staff Headquarters or any military service "has ever considered the US or Afghanistan as a direct threat".
The raid against bin Laden had left a "very deep imprint on the entire Pakistani nation in general and the armed forces in particular," Ali said.

The Pakistani armed forces "are now better prepared to respond to any" recurrence of the incident and adequate safeguards have been put in place, he said.

The defence forces have instituted "certain measures to preclude the possibility of such a recurrence in future," he said.

The commission, headed by former Supreme Court judge Javed Iqbal, has been asked by the government to ascertain how the al-Qaeda leader managed to live in Pakistan for several years, investigate the US operation that killed him, determine the nature and causes of lapses by authorities, and make suitable recommendations.Ali told the commission that Pakistan's strategic assets were well protected by an elaborate defensive mechanism.

The Defence Secretary gave the panel a detailed statement explaining the salient features of the country’s defence policy, which had been approved by the Defence Committee of the Cabinet headed by the Prime Minister.

The defence policy directs the Joint Staff Headquarters to formulate the Joint Strategic Directive, which was issued in 2007 following extensive debate within the armed forces.
The directive acts as the main document for the armed forces for matters such as their composition, structuring, development plans, training and employment strategy.

The directive includes specific instructions for the armed forces to prepare for countering identified threats, Ali said.

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