NEW YORK: Pakistan’s ambassador to the United Nations Maleeha Lodhi has said that today Pakistan is among the world’s top three troop contributing countries to UN peacekeeping.
Speaking at an event organized by Pakistani Americans in Bayside in New York, Maleeha Lodhi said that Pakistan enjoys enormous respect in the 193-member organization and it has earned this by the active role it has played in the world body.
The ambassador said that Pakistan’s contribution to UN peacekeeping, engagement in all important issues and norm setting in the areas of development, human rights and security, is widely acknowledged and appreciated.
Maleeha Lodhi said that Pakistan’s contribution to UN peacekeeping showed Pakistan’s commitment to international peace and security as well as reflected the fact that Pakistan has a professional and well trained army.
The envoy told the Pakistani Community gathering that Pakistan has met its challenges over the years by its resilience, faith and grit. She said that Pakistan approaches its 70th anniversary of independence there is much to be proud of.
“We should remember and celebrate our accomplishments, even as we continue to face up to and negotiate our challenges”, she said.
Maleeha Lodhi said that the challenges were there but just as a resilient nation, Pakistan has managed to surmount crises and natural disasters like earthquakes and floods with exemplary strength and dignity, it will continue to overcome present day challenges.
The ambassador said that already Pakistan had turned the corner on the economic and security challenges facing the Country and this gives us the confidence to continue our efforts to ensure that Pakistan emerges from all its problems as a stronger and even more confident nation.
The envoy urged Pakistani Americans to step up their political engagement which she termed ‘critical’ to represent themselves, articulate their demands and voice their grievances.
“If you don’t represent yourself, others will define you and misrepresent you”, she added.
Lodhi also advised the younger generation of the Pakistani Community to join the media and the IT sector.
“Communication is the key”, she said. “These are important areas to join”. She also urged them to exude confidence and take pride in their roots.
Maleeha Lodhi also gave away recognition awards to 20 major Pakistani-American organizations working in the New York area.