Message from Ambassador Munir Akram, Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the UN on Pakistan Defence Day

New York, September 6, 2020

The 6th September is commemorated in Pakistan to recognize our national resolve to defend our sovereignty against foreign aggression and maintaining regional peace. Pakistan's commitment to peace transcends its borders. This dedication and resolve to the cause of peace is inspired vision of our founding father, Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah for a Pakistan that would make its "utmost contribution to the promotion of peace and prosperity among the nations of the world and would not be found lacking in extending its material and moral support to the oppressed and suppressed people of the world and in upholding the principles of the United Nations Charter".

It is in line with the same vision that Pakistan has supported United Nations' efforts to maintain International Peace and Security as a leading troop contributing country for more than six decades.

Pakistan joined UN peacekeeping in 1960 with the deployment of contingents in the United Nations Mission in Congo. Since then, Pakistan has contributed more than 200,000 peacekeepers in 46 missions in 28 countries.

Our troops have served under the UN flag with professionalism and dedication. They have helped war-torn societies rebuild, establish law and order, and achieve peace through political solutions. Our contribution to the cause of global peace has not been without cost; 157 of our best and bravest, including 24 officers and a female peacekeeper, have made the ultimate sacrifice during these missions.

As an active and progressive member of the international community, Pakistan will always support efforts to achieve peace, stability, and socio-economic progress. We take pride in leading the global efforts in eradicating terrorism. We have successfully turned the tide against terrorism. This has come at the grave cost of tens of thousands of precious and innocent lives. Our endeavour for a peaceful Afghanistan is well recognized by the international community and the United Nations. It is unfortunate, however, that despite our commitment and best efforts, strategic stability in region continues to be held hostage by our eastern neighbour who shows no regard for the principles of the UN Charter or for human rights.

On this auspicious day we honour the sacrifice our sons and daughters who laid down their lives defending the motherland. We also reiterate our abiding commitment to achieve the just resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with the aspirations of the valiant Kashmiri people through a free and fair plebiscite guaranteed to them by numerous UN Security Council resolutions.

Pakistan desires peace in the region. We have always sided with those who seek to promote greater cooperation and friendly relations on the basis of equality and mutual respect.