Pakistan Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Thursday warned the Taliban that security forces would retaliate against attacks on them. However, he reiterated the government’s commitment for peace through dialogue with the militants and was optimistic that the talks would get back on track.

Responding to questions at a press conference, he said the government was firm on the path of dialogue but that did not mean other options were not available. While the Prime Minister had taken a decision that the dialogue could not go forward when terror strikes continued, as it would be unjust to the people who were being targeted, the government wanted peace.

The Prime Minister was sincere in his approach that dialogue was the best way forward but some sections were taking advantage of this and attacking the security forces.

Since Wednesday night air strikes have been targeting militant hideouts in North Waziristan and at least 15 terrorists have been reported killed. These were meant to be retaliatory action for recent terror strikes, military sources said. Ever since the All Parties Conference gave a mandate for a dialogue, operations

against the militants had been stopped, the Minister said. As for the demands for a ceasefire, he said the government was not doing anything to jeopardise the peace process.