Listen to his full speech here:
Pakistan on Friday called on the global assembly of world leaders to counter "all terrorists", pointing to the rising threat posed by ''state terrorism'' and the far-right extremist and fascist groups such as the Hindutva-inspired extremists in India.
This was raised by Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar Ul Haq Kakar on Friday while speaking during the annual United Nations General Assembly.
In his speech, Kakar called on the world to push for solving the long-standing conflicts in Kashmir and Palestine in line with the expectations of the respective people while also urging the world to fulfill its $100 billion commitment to the global climate fund.
Kakar started off by identifying how tensions between the global powers have continued to escalate, putting the world in jeopardy.
"We see the rise of new and old military and political blocs," he said.
He outlined how "geopolitics is resurging when geoeconomics should
have primacy in the world".
"The world cannot afford Cold War 2.0. There are far greater challenges confronting humankind which demand global cooperation and collective action."
This is contributing to a rise in extremism globally, he said and that there was a need to counter it.
"We must counter all terrorists without discrimination, including the rising threat posed by far-right extremists and fascist groups, such as Hindutva-inspired extremists, threatening genocide against India's Muslims and Christians," he said, adding, "We also need to oppose "state terrorism"; address the root causes of terrorism, such as poverty, injustice and foreign occupation; and distinguish genuine freedom struggles from terrorism."
He proposed the creation of a Committee of the General Assembly to oversee the balanced implementation of all four pillars of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.
Kakar suggested that the extremism we see today has its roots in narratives advocating a clash of civilisations.
"The narratives advocating a clash of civilisations have done considerable harm to humanity's progress. Such ideas have bred extremism, hatred and religious intolerance, including Islamophobia. Make no mistake; it is a latent threat that undermines millennia of progress," he said.
"We need to cherish and celebrate our diversity and different ways of life. Mutual respect, the sanctity of religious symbols, scriptures and personages should be ensured."
On Islamophobia, he said that it assumed "epidemic proportions" that manifested itself in the negative profiling of Muslims and attacks on Islamic sites and symbols, such as the recent public desecration of the Holy Quran.
Regional connectivity and peace
Noting that Pakistan's long-term shift to geoeconomics is well underway, Kakar underpinned its success with regional connectivity.
"Pakistan is situated in one of the least economically integrated regions in the world. Pakistan believes that regions develop together," he said, adding that for this purpose, Islamabad desires peaceful and productive relations with all of its neighbours, including India.
This is why the resolution of the Kashmir dispute is the key to peace between Pakistan and India.
Similarly, peace in Afghanistan will aid the economic recovery of the war-torn country and the implementation of the connectivity projects with Central Asia.
Kakar informed the gathering that The second phase of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has been initiated, covering railway, infrastructure, and manufacturing projects, while Pakistan also looks forward to the early implementation of the "Connectivity" projects with Central Asia.
He added that the complex global and regional challenges that the world
faces today can be best addressed through effective multilateralism within the framework of the United Nations. However, multilateralism is being eschewed due to the unilateral policies of strategic rivalry and tensions between global powers.
"Pakistan will continue to work actively to strengthen multilateral institutions and enhance global cooperation.
Global economy and climate funding
Kakar said that apart from extremism, the world is facing economic challenges at the global level.
"Global growth is slow. High-interest rates could trigger a recession," he warned, adding, "A succession of exogenous "shocks" - Covid, conflict and climate change - have devastated the economies of many developing countries; many countries of the global South have barely managed to stave off defaults."
He said that the increase in poverty and hunger has reversed the development gains of the past three decades.
Pointing to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Summit on the sidelines of the UNGA, he said far-reaching commitments were made to implement the Sustainable Development Goals.
"We must ensure implementation of the "SDG Stimulus"; the rechannelling of unused Special Drawing Rights for development; the expansion of concessional lending by the Multilateral Development Banks, and the resolution of the debt problems of the 59 countries in debt distress," he said.
He added that Pakistan is looking to the fulfillment of the climate change commitments made at COP28 by the developed world: to provide over $100 billion in annual climate finance.
The interim prime minister said that at least half of such finance must be allocated for adaptation in developing countries.
He called for operationalising the Fund and mobilising funding for Loss and
Damage; and accelerate the carbon emission mitigation targets to "keep alive" the goal of restricting global warming to 1.5 degrees centigrade. Attempts to selectively provide these funds on the basis of geo-political considerations should be resisted.
Appreciating global commitments of over $10.5 billion for Pakistan's comprehensive plan for recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction with resilience – the 4RF Plan – at the Geneva Conference last January, he said that specific projects are being submitted to ensure timely funding and execution of the 4RF Plan.
"I hope our development partners will accord priority to the allocation (release) of funds for our "resilient" recovery Plan, which has been costed at $13 billion.
On Kashmir, he said that it remains the key to peace between Pakistan and India.
Stating that the Jammu and Kashmir dispute is one of the oldest issues on the agenda of the Security Council, Kakar said that India has evaded the implementation of the Security Council's resolutions, which call for the "final disposition" of Jammu and Kashmir to be decided by its people through a UN-supervised plebiscite.
Moreover, he pointed out how, since August 5, 2019, India has deployed 900,000 troops in the Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir to impose the "Final Solution" for Kashmir. To this end, India has imposed extended lockdowns and curfews, jailed all the genuine Kashmir leaders, violently suppressed peaceful protests, resorted to extra-judicial killings of innocent Kashmiris in fake "encounters" and so-called "cordon and search operations", and imposed collective punishments, destroying entire villages.
Access to occupied Kashmir, demanded by the UN High Commission for Human Rights and over a dozen Special Rapporteurs, has been denied by New Delhi, he reminded.
"The UN Security Council must secure the implementation of its resolutions on Kashmir," he stressed, adding that the UN Military Observer Group for India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) should be reinforced.
"Global powers should convince New Delhi to accept Pakistan's offer of mutual restraint on strategic and conventional weapons."
Kakar reminded that no one has a greater strategic interest in establishing peace in Afghanistan than Pakistan.
"Pakistan shares the concerns of the international community with respect to Afghanistan, particularly the rights of women and girls," he said.
Despite that, Kakar advocated for continued humanitarian assistance for a destitute Afghan population in which Afghan girls and women are the most vulnerable, as well as the revival of the Afghan economy.
Pakistan, he noted, will accord first priority to preventing and countering all terrorism originating from and within Afghanistan.
"Pakistan condemns the cross-border terrorist attacks against Pakistan by the TTP, Daesh and other groups operating from Afghanistan," he said in a veiled reference to the cross-border attack earlier this month.
"We have sought Kabul's support and cooperation to prevent these attacks. However, we are also taking necessary measures to end this externally encouraged terrorism," he said.