Pakistan never shirked its responsibility in times of humanitarian crisis: Bilawal

May 19, 2022

Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari says Pakistan had potential to meet own, regional, and world's food security

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Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari speaking to journalists, while a portrait of his deceased mother, Benazir Bhutto, could be seen in the background. — AFP/File

Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari said thatPakistan had the potential to not only meet its own food security needs but also that of the region and the world, a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Thursday.

Bilawalparticipated in the ministerial meeting on the "Global Food Security Call to Action" in New York, United States, today.

The foreign minister said that despite limited resources, Pakistan had never shirked its responsibility in times of a humanitarian crisis. Pakistan was playing a leadership role in advocating for humanitarian aid for the people of Afghanistan and had provided humanitarian aid to Afghanistan as well as Ukraine.

He said that Pakistan was suffering fromthe vestiges of colonialism, turbulent history, constant quest to improve democracy, and has been caught in the cross-hairs of global geopolitics. Therefore, it had been unable to unlock its agricultural and economic potential.

"Pakistan faced existential threats of climate change, COVID-19 pandemic, and poverty, which resulted in food, water, and energy insecurity," added Bilawal.

In his statement, the foreign ministerlauded the initiative to unite and mobilise the international community to respond to the urgent food security and nutrition challenges being faced by the world, which had been further aggravated by the recent geopolitical developments.

Welcoming the "Roadmap for Global Food Security" presented at the ministerial meeting, the PPP chairman expressed the hope that the initiative would not only motivate countries with resources but also provide assurances to those who face challenges due to resource constraints.

Bilawal added thathunger has no nationality, poverty does not care for skin colour, infections do not recognise borders, and the threat of climate catastrophe does not recognise ethnicity and underscoredthat wars aggravated the challenges of poverty and hunger, and created a humanitarian crisis in their wake.

Emphasising the importance of dialogue and diplomacy to resolve disputes peacefully, the foreign minister stressed that the new generation looked up to the world leaders to unite to overcome these challenges and to ensure that vaccines and healthcare are a right and not a privilege.

The foreign minister said that his generation was looking toward the United Nations to deliver the peace it was promised, and the peace it deserves.

The ministerial meeting was convened by the United States to mobilise action around the key objectives of addressing and mitigating the impacts of the global food security crisis. Chaired by the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, it brought together a regionally diverse group of countries to evolve a shared vision for confronting global food security challenges.

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