Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Thursday said continued peace in the region would remain a dream until the core dispute over Jammu and Kashmir is resolved in accordance with United Nations Security Council Resolutions and the aspirations of the Kashmiri people.
In his virtual address to the Conference on Confidence-Building Interaction and Action in Asia (CICA) from here, he said the brutal and inhuman military siege and blockade of communications since India’s illegal and unilateral act last August, have destroyed lives at IIOJK.
During the meeting, the Foreign Minister assessed that India’s steps had resulted in the disruption of livelihoods and endangered IIOJK’s public identity.
He stressed that oppression of Kashmiris and denying them their fundamental right to self-determination, as stated in the relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, is against the basic principles of the CICA.
Qureshi said Pakistan has always been at the forefront of all international initiatives to promote peace, tolerance, intercultural and interfaith harmony and mutual respect both at home and abroad.
He reiterated Pakistan’s strong commitment to global and regional peace and stability, and to the socio-economic well-being of its people through partnerships at the regional and sub-regional levels.
“We believe that a peaceful and safe environment, both regionally and globally, will make a major contribution to sustainable economic growth and development, poverty reduction and improvement of the welfare of our people,” he said.
Marking it as a ‘historic’ launch of the Intra-Afghan negotiations in Doha, the Foreign Minister said Prime Minister Imran Khan had long maintained that there was no military solution to the conflict in Afghanistan because ‘a political solution is the only way forward’.
Qureshi expressed satisfaction that Pakistani perspectives are now widespread throughout the international community and urged Afghan leaders to take this historic opportunity by working for an inclusive, broad-based and comprehensive political solution.
The peak of the success of the Intra-Afghan negotiations remains indispensable for peace, stability and prosperity in the region and beyond, he said.
The Foreign Minister stressed the facilitation of Pakistan in a process that culminated in the US-Taliban Peace Agreement in Doha on February 29 this year.
Spoilers, he says, both internal and external, can pose formidable challenges that require constant vigilance to guard against their intrigue.
He highlighted the alarming situation of the global rise of xenophobia, Islamophobia, hatred and acts of violence against minorities.
He points to a disproportionate growth in hate speech and the stigmatization of Muslim communities and individuals, including in Pakistani circles.
He reassured Pakistan’s commitment to promoting peace, stability and development in the region.
Qureshi said as COVID-19 affects the entire world with unprecedented health, humanitarian and economic challenges, cooperative multilateralism offers
the best mechanism to deal with this problem effectively.
Pakistan like other countries, he said, is working for joint international efforts to fight the pandemic and develop vaccines that are accessible for the benefit of the global public.
He mentioned Prime Minister Imran Khan’s proposal for a ‘Global Initiative on Debt Aid’ for developing countries to achieve enhanced fiscal capacity and deal with the negative consequences of the pandemic.
The Foreign Minister said Pakistan fully supports China’s Belt and Road Initiative and is proud to be a key player in one of its flagship projects – the China Pakistan Economic Corridor.
He said apart from the development of Pakistan, CPEC would ensure benefits for neighboring Central Asia and Eurasia.
He thanked the forthcoming Chief Minister of Foreign Affairs of Tajikistan for the dynamic leadership of the CICA over the past two years and congratulated Mukhtar Tileuberdi, when Kazakhstan took over the leadership of CICA.
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