Home Muhammad Flood-ravaged Pakistani leader appeals for urgent global support during speech at UN |

Flood-ravaged Pakistani leader appeals for urgent global support during speech at UN |

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“No words can describe the shock we are experiencing or how the face of the country is being transformed,” Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif said during the General Assembly’s annual high-level debate.

“For 40 days and 40 nights, a biblical deluge washed over us, shattering centuries of weather records, challenging everything we knew about disasters and how to deal with them.”

No more striking evidence of global warming

Nearly eight million people have been displaced by the disaster, according to the UN, which, together with authorities and partners, has continued to reach affected populations with desperately needed relief items. To date, more than 1,500 people have been killed, including 552 children.

The Prime Minister noted that some 33 million people are now exposed to health risks; more than 13,000 kilometers of roads were damaged; a million houses were destroyed and another million damaged; and four million acres of crops were washed away.

“Pakistan has never seen such a stark and devastating example of the impact of global warming,” he said. “Life in Pakistan has changed forever.”

During its visit to the country earlier this month, the UN Secretary General António Guterres said he had never seen “climate carnage on this scale” and called for urgent financial support to help Pakistan, saying it was not just a matter of solidarity but a matter of justice.

The Prime Minister noted, “Nature has unleashed her fury on Pakistan without looking at our carbon footprint, which is almost zero. Our actions have not contributed to this.

He added that the current priority is to ensure rapid economic growth and lift millions out of poverty, which requires a stable external environment.

Lasting Peace in South Asia

“Lasting peace and stability in South Asia, however, remains dependent on a just and lasting solution to the conflict in Jammu and Kashmir. At the heart of this long-standing dispute is the denial of the Kashmiri people’s inalienable right to self-determination,” he said.

The Prime Minister added that in a “classic colonial scheme”, India is seeking to transform Muslim-majority Jammu and Kashmir into a Hindu-majority territory through “illegal demographic changes”.

“Millions of bogus ‘domicile certificates’ have been issued to non-Kashmiris; Kashmir lands and properties are seized; constituencies were gerrymandered; and over 2.5 million non-Kashmirian illegal voters registered fraudulently. All of this is in clear violation of security Council resolutions and international law, in particular the Fourth Geneva Convention.

He called on the United Nations and the Secretary-General to play their due role in urging India to implement existing United Nations resolutions on this issue.

The position of the United Nations on this region is governed by the Charter of the United Nations and applicable Security Council resolutions. The Secretary-General maintains that the final settlement of Jammu and Kashmir must be achieved by peaceful means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and bilateral agreements.