Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Pervez Kayani on Wednesday said that the army would second any political solution under the Constitution to resolve the problems of insurgency-hit Balochistan, a press released by Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) said.

He noted, “Army will extend its support to a political solution to the Balochistan problem, provided that the solution is according to the Constitution of Pakistan. Any step taken which goes against the Constitution will be unacceptable.”

It is vital to mention here that Pakistan army recently came under fire during a gripping hearing on the law and order situation in Balochistan where disgruntled Baloch leader and former chief minister of the province Sardar Akhtar Mengal made his first appearance in the Supreme Court.

Mengal presented before the court six recommendations that include suspension of covert and overt military operations in Balochistan, recovery of missing persons, and disbanding ‘death squads’ operating under the supervision of secret agencies.

The military chief made these remarks in a policy statement on the deteriorating situation in the province before leaving for Russia on a four-day official visit.

During his visit to Russia, Kayani will have several high-level engagements with the Russian political leadership in addition to dialogue with his counterpart on expanding relations between the two militaries.

Kayani’s visit follows the cancellation of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s trip to Islamabad, scheduled for Oct 2-3, and coincides with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Viktorovich Lavrov’s two-day visit to Islamabad (Oct 3-4) on the invitation of Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar.

Mr Lavrov is scheduled to call on President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf, besides holding bilateral consultations.

Political pundits dubbing the visit a breakthrough in cooperation between both the countries, claim it can become beginning of a new era of Pak-Russian relations.

Pakistan has been desperately trying to strengthen ties with Russian in a bid to lessen its reliability on the United States.

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