Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif has inaugurated recent upgrades made to the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC), which was originally established in 2014 to train Pakistani armed forces personnel for counterinsurgency (COIN) operations.
According to the state-owned Associated Press of Pakistan, the NCTC’s infrastructure was upgraded in order to accommodate the growth in program participants, which as of late have increasingly come from Pakistan’s law enforcement agencies (LEA) as well as foreign armed forces.
Over the past two years, the NCTC has trained 231,000 armed forces soldiers and 3,483 officers as well as LEA and Ministry of Interior personnel. The NCTC has also played host to bilateral exercises with China, Sri Lanka, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Bahrain, and the Maldives.
Notes & Comments:
The NCTC could be viewed as a physical manifestation of General Raheel Sharif’s commitment in building Pakistan’s capacity for COIN. Established in 2014, the NCTC had trained 3,000 personnel a month in COIN-specific competencies, such as operating in small teams and fighting in built-up or urban areas. In parallel, the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) is also in the process of building the Airpower Centre of Excellence (ACE), which will impart COIN training and expertise from the purview of air warfare.