November 20, 2023
Chief Minister Secretariat
REMARKS AS PREPARED FOR DELIVERY
AMBASSADOR BLOME: It is an honor to stand with you today to reaffirm the United States’ commitment to Pakistan as it works to protect and defend its people from the scourge of terrorism. The police and law enforcement officials assembled here are on the front lines of that fight every single day.
Today, with support from the Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement, I am delighted to announce four new initiatives to support the Balochistan Police in their efforts to protect and serve local communities:
First, we will provide $4 million in assistance to expand the Anti-Terrorist Force training facility, doubling the current capacity by offering simultaneous instruction to an additional 800 trainees;
Second, we will provide $2 million to repair or replace 10 flood-damaged police stations with upgraded model police stations. These model police stations include dedicated facilities that will allow Balochistan Police to better serve women and girls with a gender desk, establish digital record management, and support alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.
Third, we will provide $2 million to construct 10 new police stations that incorporate that same model to improve service to women, girls, and all Pakistanis.
Finally, we are providing $250,000 in equipment to protect law enforcement officers in the course of conducting their work.
These new initiatives build on more than 40 years of partnership between the U.S. Mission and Pakistan on civilian security and rule of law. Our partnership improves justice institutions and provides law enforcement agencies with the tools they need to protect Pakistan’s citizens.
We have helped Pakistan secure its border, fight narcotics trafficking, and combat terrorism. We have provided lifesaving protective equipment, improved law enforcement training curriculum, built and upgraded police stations, and helped ensure gender-inclusive policing. Taken together, these actions make Pakistan safer, stronger, and more secure.
Here in Quetta, in 2022 we assisted with the the construction of the academic blocks, multipurpose hall, and women’s barracks, which have dramatically increased training capacity. In a few minutes, IG Shaikh will announce the inauguration of Balochistan’s first Women and Juvenile Facilitation Center just around the corner from here, built with funding from our Mission’s International Narcotics and Law Enforcement section in partnership with the UN Office of Drug Control. The facility will soon be operational and provide a better space for police to better protect and serve women and girls.
We hope that all these projects will significantly increase police capacity to protect the civilians of Balochistan.
The tragic attacks that have taken place over the past few months in Balochistan remind us that much work remains. This year alone, more than 50 officers have made the ultimate sacrifice – laying down their lives in the line of duty as they worked to provide safety and security for the Pakistani people. On behalf of the government and people of the United States, I want to extend my deepest sympathies and condolences to their families, loved ones, colleagues, and friends, many of whom are with us today. Let us pause to honor their service and their sacrifice.
In closing, I’d like to underscore the United States’ commitment to working with Pakistan to build a safer, secure, and more prosperous future. A future that safeguards freedom and opportunity for the Pakistani people and promotes greater stability across the entire region.
This future is only possible with sustained security and equitable rule of law, and I am grateful to each and every one of you – police and law enforcement officers, government officials, and our partners – for your courage and commitment in advancing our common cause. Your work is an inspiration. And we will continue to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with you as together we work to advance our shared goal of security and justice for all.