Remarks of Ambassador Masood Khan, Permanent Representative of Pakistan, at the Special Meeting of the General Assembly dedicated to the life and memory of President Nelson Mandela.(19 December 2013)

Mr. President,

During his life time, Nelson Mandela led a nation out of apartheid, the worst form of racial discrimination we witnessed last century. He inspired individuals and nations around the world to espouse and embrace freedom and peace. He ably led a nation.

Mandela embodied and exemplified the virtues of courage, persistence, and perseverance. He galvanized his nation and many other nations towards liberty. But beyond that, he was a good human being with a caring heart, free of rancor and revenge.

As he passed away, he united peoples and nations once again. More than a hundred leaders traveled to South Africa to attend his funeral. Now he passes into eternity and his legacy belongs to the ages. We are proud that we lived in the times when Nelson Mandela was on this planet. But he truly belongs to the future as much as he belongs to the present.

Pakistan's President Mamnoon Hussain attended the funeral of Mr. Mandela. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif visited the South African Embassy in Islamabad to convey his personal condolences. On that occasion he said that death of Mr. Mandela is a great loss to the world. The Prime Minister further said that he was a man of foresight and great wisdom and his services towards reconciliation, human rights and democracy will always be remembered forever; and his memory will serve as a beacon for the coming generations in their quest for human dignity and equality.

Once again, the people and Government of Pakistan convey their deepest condolences to South Africa, and indeed the people of the entire globe, and rejoice with them about the rich legacy Mr. Mandela leaves behind.

I thank you Mr. President.