ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: Ukraine has lauded the efforts by Pakistani government to avoid further escalation of humanitarian crises in Ukraine following the invasion of Russia.
“The Embassy appreciates approach of the Pakistani government that shows itself in “proactive engagement” with the members of the international community in order to support international diplomatic efforts to avoid further escalation of violence and loss of life as well as military, political and economic tensions, supporting Ukrainians with humanitarian aid etc, said a statement released by the Embassy of Ukraine on 30th anniversary of Ukraine-Pakistan diplomatic relations.
The following is the full statement;
“30 years ago, March 16, 1992 diplomatic relations between Ukraine and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan were established.
Since that, Ukraine and Pakistan has been enjoying friendly, time-tested, mutually beneficial and problem-free relations.
There is active engagement in different areas, especially in military and technical, trade and economic domains, in bilateral and multilateral formats between the two countries.
Pakistan became an important economic partner for Ukraine, ranking the 5th among Ukraine’s trading partners in the Asia-Pacific region. Ukraine is a key trade partner for Pakistan too, being listed in the TOP-20 major importers.
Іn 2021, the trade turnover between the two countries increased by 82% and amounted 751,218 million USD.
Ukraine and Pakistan`s cooperation in the military-technical field proved to be very productive and successful. In 1996, the first multi-million dollar contract provided Pakistan with modern tanks as well as Ukrainian producers with long-term orders. Since then, almost 150 military-technical contracts worth more than 1.5 billion USD have been signed and implemented.
Notwithstanding ongoing Russian aggression against Ukraine, Ukrainian defence contractors reiterate their determination to keep their commitments to Pakistani partners in full.
Cooperation between Ukraine and Pakistan in the field of culture, education and science has significant achievements too. So far, thousands of Pakistanis have been educated in Ukraine.
Ukraine and Pakistan – two freedom-loving nations, proud for their Motherland. This fact brings us ever closer together. Both peoples are ready to protect their land, and now the time has come for Ukraine to prove it by deeds.
For the 21th day in a row, the Armed Forces of Ukraine along with the Ukrainian people have been resisting Russian occupants. Ukraine did not surrender in three days, as Russian leadership was expecting and never will do it.
Faced with military defeats, losses of personnel and vigorous resistance, the Russian troops began indiscriminate attacks on Ukrainian cities with missile strikes and heavy artillery. The residential areas of such cities as Kharkiv, Chernihiv, Sumy, Mariupol, Melitopol, outskirts of Kyiv and many others, are intensively shelled, leaving daily dozens of innocent civilians killed and wounded.
As of midnight 13 March the UN OHCHR recorded 1761 confirmed civilian casualties in Ukraine: 636 killed and 1125 injured (as of midnight 13 March). The OHCHR believes that the real human loss is much more higher.
According to the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine, 97 children were killed by Russian invaders, and more than 100 wounded (as of 15 March).
Kindergartens and schools, universities and hospitals, airports and fuel stations, bridges and water reservoirs are targeted. More than 400 educational institutions, 111 hospitals and more than 1500 residential buildings were damaged or destroyed.
Many people have lost their homes. According to the UNHCR data (as of 13 March), 2.7 million persons left Ukraine, and at least 1.85 million became IDPs.
Ukraine appreciates all the assistance provided by international partners all over the world in this hard time. As of 14 March, Ukraine received more than 50.000 tons of international humanitarian aid.
The genuine manifestation of friendship and solidarity become a decision made by the Pakistani government to provide humanitarian assistance to Ukraine (food, medicine, clothing, generators and hygiene items) to ease sufferings of affected civilians. The delivery of the aid coincides with 30th anniversary of Ukraine-Pakistan diplomatic relations.
Looking into how Pakistani Media cover current events in Ukraine, there is an issue of terming what really is happening in Ukraine right now. “Russia-West confrontation”, “Situation”, “Crisis”, “armed conflict”, “military operation”, “war” between Russia and Ukraine? “Russian invasion”? It is crucial to call things by their proper names. True names tell a truth about things; help to make conscious decisions and conclusions.
The situation is far beyond of “Russia-West confrontation” as 2 March 2022, the UN General Assembly adopted — by an overwhelming majority of 141 against 5 — a resolution “Aggression against Ukraine” rejecting the Russian Federation’s brutal invasion of Ukraine and demanding that Russia immediately withdraw its forces and abide by international law.
24 February 2022, the Russian troops attacked Ukraine, sovereign state, with regular troops, armoured vehicles, artillery, aviation, and missile, killing civilians and ruining infrastructure. In fact, Russia launched a full-scale war against Ukraine, committing an act of aggression while Ukraine is the one defending itself.
While naming the situation in Ukraine, a clear reference must always be done to Russia as an aggressor.
The Russian war against Ukraine is not just an issue of Ukrainian-Russian relations or Europe, as its consequences go far beyond the region and have global dimension affecting countries geographically distant from the war zone.
In current international situation, no member of international community can stay aside the tragedy, unfolding in Ukraine, as all are affected.
War launched by Russia against Ukraine is not only the gravest military threat to international peace but a severe challenge to global food security:
✔ Ukraine is one of the world’s leading food suppliers. In 2021, Ukraine food export amounted 27.9 billion USD. The wheat export – 20 million tons, poultry – 459 thousand tons etc. Volumes of exports to Asian countries increased to 13.7 billion USD. Russia’s aggression causes unprecedented increase in food prices and shortages in world markets.
✔ Ukraine’s exports comprise 10% of all wheat, 16% of all corn and 55% of all sunflower oil in the world. Due to the war, food exports from Ukraine are currently suspended;
✔ As war is unfolding, the situation will further deteriorate. A large deficit of grain production and exports will cause a significant increase in world grain prices.
✔ If this year’s sowing / grain harvesting campaign in Ukraine fails due to hostilities, the food loss cannot be compensated. 400 million lives in the Middle East, North Africa and Asia are at risk of unstable access to food, malnutrition and famine.
Ukraine has proved to be a reliable guarantor of food security of Pakistan. At the peak of the “flour crisis” in 2020, Ukrainian traders covered two-thirds of the grain deficit, exporting 1.2 million tons of wheat to Pakistan. In 2021 Ukraine exported to Pakistan 1,344 million tons of wheat, 334 thousand tons of oil seeds.
With the war raging in Ukraine, “food security” of Pakistan is under attack, as Ukraine is the second largest supplier of imported wheat (39% of grain imports) for Pakistan. In 2021, Ukraine’s food supplies to Pakistan reached 572.2 million USD (out of overall Ukrainian export of 658.3 million USD).
The impact of Russian aggression on the energy security of states should not be underestimated. World prices for natural gas and oil are reaching new and new highs. In this situation, developing countries are among the first to be affected.
Further escalation or prolongation of Russian aggression against Ukraine in no way meets Pakistan interests, only exacerbate existing economic problems and bury the prospects for economic growth. Therefore, it is genuine interest Pakistan as well as all developing countries to do their best to end the war in Ukraine.
The Embassy appreciates approach of the Pakistani government that shows itself in “proactive engagement” with the members of the international community in order to support international diplomatic efforts to avoid further escalation of violence and loss of life as well as military, political and economic tensions, supporting Ukrainians with humanitarian aid etc.
In this very special day for Ukraine-Pakistan relations we express our confidence that Pakistan as a key South Asian State, influential member of Islamic community will contribute significantly to putting an end to tragedy, unfolding in the heart of Europe by means of diplomacy and negotiations.
Taking an opportunity, the Embassy of Ukraine extends its heartfelt congratulations and best wishes of success and prosperity to all friends and partners in both Ukraine and Pakistan!
We wish peace, love and prosperity to our nations.
Long live friendship between Ukraine and Pakistan!
Glory to Ukraine!