Speaking on the occasion, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi outlined the Government’s priorities with a particular focus on social and economic development, poverty alleviation, job creation and institutional reforms. Acknowledging the role and contribution of the United Nations in these endeavours, the Foreign Minister expressed Pakistan’s willingness to further build on this partnership.
The Foreign Minister highlighted the seminal role played by Pakistani diplomats in shaping global norms, negotiating international treaties and steering deliberations in the fields of peace, security and development. He also expressed deep appreciation for enduring contribution of Pakistani troops and police personnel to the UN peacekeeping and paid tribute to the 156 Pakistani peacekeepers for their ultimate sacrifice for world peace.
Mr. Neil Buhne, the UN Resident Coordinator in Pakistan said the growing interdependence among countries and communities, and the importance to development of partnerships with civil society and the private sector, showed the importance of the UN’s work in building trust. “In everything we do, in partnership with the people and Government of Pakistan, the UN agencies, funds and programmes work together, to create something greater than the sum of our parts. We work to expand peoples’ options and opportunities, and we empower them with the ability to make their own choices. We work to protect those who cannot speak out for themselves. We work to assist communities to unite and work toward common goals. We strive to enable the people of Pakistan to create the world they want for themselves and for their children. We act to uphold dignity for everyone.”
He said: “As we move forward towards achieving Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals, let’s vow to not let anyone fall by the wayside. We are in this together and we must never give up”.
The UN Secretary General’s video message was also played on this occasion. A photo exhibition capturing the visual history of Pakistan’s diplomatic engagement at the United Nations since 1947 had also been arranged.
The Foreign Secretary, heads of diplomatic missions and UN agencies, senior civil and military officials, former Pakistani Ambassadors and officers of the Foreign Ministry were present at this well-attended event.