Statement by Ambassador Munir Akram, Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations, at the General Debate of the First Committee (4 October 2021)

Mr. Chairman,

I congratulate you and other members of the Bureau on your election.

Pakistan aligns itself with the statement of the Non- Aligned Movement.

Mr. Chairman,

The world is facing multiple and inter-locking global threats and challenges – the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic crisis confronting the developing countries, and the existential threat posed by climate change.

These global challenges should have brought humanity together. Instead, we witness:

The danger of war, and the danger of nuclear war, is growing. This could happen by reckless design or miscalculation.

A concerted effort is needed, especially between nuclear weapon states, to revive the international consensus on security and disarmament. In this context, we welcome the resumption of the strategic dialogue between the two States – U.S. and Russia – with the largest nuclear arsenals.

Mr. Chairman,

Pakistan endorses the conclusion that “a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought”. Yet, nuclear disarmament can be achieved only in a comprehensive and holistic manner, by addressing regional and global challenges, and conventional and strategic asymmetries, thereby addressing the security concerns of all States, as envisaged in the SSOD I declaration.

Mr. Chairman,

There is a clear and present threat to international peace and security in South Asia. This threat emanates from the ultra nationalist and ideologically driven Hindutva regime ruling South Asia’s largest State.

This fascist regime is embarked on imposing a genocidal “Final Solution” in occupied Jammu and Kashmir, in violation of the Security Council resolutions calling for plebiscite to enable the Kashmiri people to exercise their inalienable right to self-determination. It has unleashed a most brutal reign of terror and oppression on the Kashmiri people – youth, women and civilians – and against its own 200 million Muslim minority. It has financed, facilitated and directed state-sponsored terrorism against Pakistan and other neighbours. To camouflage its crimes, it has resorted to the world’s most notorious disinformation campaign.

India’s oppressive policies are accompanied by the quest for regional hegemony and “great power” status, despite its domestic political and economic disarray. It has embarked on massive militarization, spending $73 billion last year on the acquisition and development of new conventional and non-conventional land, air and sea weapons systems.

India has also nuclearized the Indian Ocean; deployed anti-ballistic missile systems; acquired anti- satellite weapons; and increased the range and sophistication of all its delivery systems. Those States which so eagerly provide these advanced weapons systems and technologies to India must know that 70 per cent of India’s weaponry and forces are deployed against Pakistan, not to serve its promised role as a counter to the rising Asian great power in the so-called “Indo-Pacific” region. And, India has operationalized its dangerous doctrines of pre-emptive aggression against Pakistan.

Pakistan will do whatever it takes to preserve full spectrum deterrence to prevent and defeat any potential Indian aggression.

Mr. Chairman,

Peace and stability in South Asia can be achieved through:

Pakistan’s proposal for a strategic restraint regime in South Asia remains on the table.

To advance the goals of regional and global stability and disarmament, Pakistan will, once again table four resolutions in this Committee to address regional and conventional arms control and disarmament and the provision of negative security assurances to non-nuclear weapon States.

I thank you.