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October 24, 2020

Implementation of Kashmir resolutions UNSG onus: Shah Mehmood Qureshi

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October 24, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi Friday said Pakistan remained committed to the promotion of multilateralism at a time when unilateralist, populist and xenophobic tendencies were rising.

Speaking at the Foreign Office on 75th Anniversary of the United Nations, Qureshi said United Nations was a central pillar of multilateral architecture and provided formidable support to human endeavours for collectively addressing complex challenges.

“We have gathered here at a time when the foundational pillars of the United Nations are under stress,” he said. Despite this, he said Pakistan also continued to host 3 million registered and unregistered Afghan refugees, which remained one of the most protracted refugee crises in the world.

“Pakistan also continues to co-host one of the oldest Peacekeeping Missions - the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP),” he added. Pointing to India, Qureshi said it was deplorable that these universal ideals continue to be violated and defied with impunity - nowhere more egregiously than in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJ&K) where a just struggle of a people to realize their inalienable right to self-determination was being suppressed with brutal use of force.

“India's gross and systematic violations of human rights in IOJ&K have been extensively documented by international human rights and humanitarian organizations as well as the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in its successive reports,” he said.

Led by 'Hindutva' ideology, the BJP-RSS regime in India is incessantly resorting to aggressive posturing against Pakistan and other neighbouring countries that seriously imperils regional peace and security, he added.

“The UN Security Council must exercise its legal and political authority to ensure full implementation of its resolutions on Kashmir, stipulating a free and fair plebiscite under UN auspices for the exercise of Kashmiris' right to self-determination,” he pointed out.

“Contribution to the UN Peacekeeping is one of the most visible manifestations of our commitment to multilateralism. Pakistan is one of the longest-serving and largest contributors to the UN peacekeeping. Since 1960, we have contributed over 200,000 peacekeepers to 46 Peacekeeping Missions around the world. More than 150 of our bravest have rendered the ultimate sacrifice in this cause,” he said.

“Pakistan is one of the few countries which have successfully restricted the spread of Coronavirus. Our government followed a strategy of 'smart lockdowns' to ensure that we save people from dying from the virus, and from dying from hunger. The threat, however, is not over yet and we continue to actively seek following of necessary SoPs. In the same vein, Pakistan was also able to combat the threat of Desert Locust, the worst of its kind in more than 25 years,” said the foreign minister.

Meanwhile, European Union Ambassador to Pakistan Androulla Kaminara said, “In an increasingly complex world and amid more pressing global challenges – such as the COVID pandemic and climate change – there is an urgent need to work together to come up with joint responses. The UN is a unique platform for bringing together the international community to provide global responses to global problems”.