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Sharif speech at UN to stress Pakistan focus on climate

ISLAMABAD: The prime minister will use his speech at the United Nations on Friday to focus on climate-induced catastrophic floods in the country, the Foreign Office said.

A Foreign Office statement released on Sunday said Shehbaz Sharif, who’s currently in London to attend Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral, will participate in the “high-level debate” of the 77th session of the General Assembly in New York from September 19-23.

Sharif will deliver his speech on the last day of the event, with a special focus on the challenge faced by Pakistan in wake of the tragedy of nightmarish proportions. He will outline proposals to collectively combat the existential threat posed by climate change.

The prime minister will also share Pakistan’s perspective on regional and global issues of concern, including the Kashmir dispute which the Foreign Office recalled is one of the long-standing unresolved disputes on the UN agenda.

During his participation, the prime minister will be accompanied by members of his cabinet and officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA).

On the sidelines of the summit, the prime minister will participate in the Global Food Security Summit jointly organised by the African Union, European Union and the United States, and a closed-door gathering on the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP-27), bringing together select world leaders to discuss climate change.

These, the statement said, will be important platforms to deliberate on effective measures required at the global level for addressing the two most pressing challenges confronting the international community today.

Prime Minister Sharif will hold a number of bilateral meetings with his counterparts from various countries, the president of the General Assembly, the UN secretary general as well as heads of international organisations, international financial institutions (IFIs) and philanthropic organisations.

“The prime minister’s participation in the UNGA session is a manifestation of Pakistan’s abiding commitment to multilateralism, with the UN playing a central role in international affairs for promoting peace and prosperity worldwide,” it added.

Both in its national capacity and as the current chair of the largest international grouping of developing countries — the Group of 77 and China — as well as the OIC Council of Foreign Ministers, Pakistan will serve as the collective voice of the Global South to promote international peace and security, sustainable development and human rights for all, in accordance with the principles of the UN Charter.

Leaders will also have the opportunity to interact during the receptions hosted by the UN secretary-general and the president of the United States. The prime minister will also hold interactions with the international media.

Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari will also attend several high-level meetings and events, bilateral meetings with a number of global counterparts, and media and think-tank interactions, besides chairing G-77 and China annual meeting of foreign ministers, OIC Annual Coordination Meeting of Foreign Ministers, and participation in the meeting of the OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir.

Center of multilateralism, the United Nations is the most vital international body, promoting international peace and security, development and human rights, and providing the foundations of a stable and sustainable world order.

As the most representative and inclusive multilateral forum of nation-states, the UN General Assembly offers the best platform to the international community for advancing shared objectives and common solutions to the common challenges faced by humanity.

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