Amid unprecedented Pandemic crisis, Pakistan attains resounding success at Diplomatic front in the year 2020
Mediating Afghanistan peace process, internationalization of Kashmir issue, leading role against Islamophobia, proactive engagement in global crisis mitigation, and successfully furbishing harmonious multilateral ties with different states are notable diplomatic accomplishments attained by Pakistan in the year 2020
Pakistan became the Champion of the Afghan Peace Process through brokering peace for a prosperous and inclusive future for the region. From facilitating US Taliban Peace Agreement in Feb 2020 to Commencement of Intra Afghan Negotiations in Sep 2020, and Agreement on rules and procedures between Afghan parties in Doha, Dec 2020 it has elevated its regional posture. A maiden visit by the Prime Minister to Afghanistan laid down the foundation of a ‘shared vision’ for a comprehensive bilateral partnership. It also established new boundaries for economic diplomacy. Likewise, Under the Engage Africa policy, held the first-ever Pakistan-Africa Trade Development Conference in Nairobi Foreign Minister agenda-setting with each of Pakistan’s missions abroad for a greater economic diplomacy footprint. Foreign Minister agenda-setting with business institutions to forge closer Public-Private Ties for greater economic diplomacy impact (Karachi visit to PBC/FPCCI/IBA). To extend its global engagement, Prime Minister Imran Khan attended the World Economic Forum [WEF] in Davos and subsequent virtual Country Strategy Dialogue, setting Pakistan’s agenda for economic stability and prosperity.
Pakistan also played a proactive role in Tabling progressive resolutions for a better world: UNGA unanimously adopted a Pakistan-sponsored resolution on self-determination, reaffirming the right to self-determination for peoples subjected to the colonial, foreign and alien occupation. UNGA also adopted Pakistan co-sponsored resolution calling for respecting sacred religious symbols and promoting inter-religious and intercultural dialogue. Notably, the world recognizes Peaceful Pakistan-UN, US, UK, Canada, Japan and France all positively revised travel advisories on Pakistan. With reference to India, it has proactively exposed India state-sponsored terrorism and disinformation agenda. Furthermore, Ensuring the Kashmir dispute is on the agenda of every regional, multilateral and bilateral forum and engagement. One of the key aspect in which Pakistan took leading global role is countering Islamophobia: Tabling International day for Islamophobia March 15 / bringing it up at every forum.
Pakistan has also raised the voices for the victim’s two major protracted conflicts. It also stood up for the inalienable right to self-determination for the people of Kashmir and Palestine and principled refusal to recognize Israel. All of the above encapsulated in Prime Minister Imran Khan’s address to UNGA 75. Pakistan unanimously elected President of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the third principal organ of the UN, along with the General Assembly and Security Council. Pakistan re-elected to United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) securing the highest number of votes among the five candidates from the Asia-Pacific region. As a manifestation of Pakistan’s commitment to the OIC and commitment to brokering peaceful dialogue, Pakistan selected as the host for 48th Session of the CFM in 2021. Launch of FM Connect with Global Thoughts Leaders, connecting the Foreign Minister with stakeholders across the globe for greater reach and influence and welcomed UNGA President Volkan Bozkir to Pakistan, an affirmation of its commitment to multilateralism. Pakistan was a key destination for foreign dignitaries, despite COVID19: this included visits from President of Turkey, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia & Herzegovina, Secretary-General of the UN, Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation of Afghanistan, Speaker of Afghanistan’s Wolesi Jirga, Chinese State Councilor & Minister of Defense, President of Inter-Parliamentary Union, and Foreign Minister of Iran respectively. Foreign Minister Qureshi maintained a robust digital and traditional diplomacy agenda, visiting different states Iran, KSA, US, Qatar, and UAE Niger and Moscow.
Adding further, The President of Pakistan and the FM among the first foreign dignitaries to visit China on the improvement of the COVID situation in a show of support and belief, thereby strengthening and reinforcing deep-rooted all-weather strategic cooperative partnership Visits to Malaysia and Qatar by the Prime Minister to strengthen fraternal ties. Pakistan also pursued digital diplomatic proceedings, among many digital sessions, attended the 5th round of EU-Pakistan Strategic Dialogue and dialogue with the Turkish and Finnish FM’s on the TRT World Forum. Indeed Pakistan has moved into to a new era of Public & Digital Diplomacy. In this regard, it joined the pioneering Digital Cooperation Organisation for multilateral digital diplomacy, as a founder member. Herein through establishing bilateral Public Diplomacy Exchange with like-minded countries it has gained remarkable achievements. The first such relationship was initiated by Pakistan with Turkey. Pakistan has also established a dedicated Public Diplomacy Consultative Group of former ambassadors and industry stalwarts for focused attention to public policy. Also appointing an Advisor to the Foreign Minister dedicated to Public Diplomacy. It established a dedicated group for Digital Diplomacy comprising Pakistan’s top digital stakeholders. Pakistan also remained globally engaged to avert the humanitarian crisis, Pakistan’s missions across the globe played a groundbreaking role in the largest repatriation operation in the history of the country, bringing home over 220’000 stranded Pakistani’s across 70 countries: stranded as a result of COVID-19. Additionally, Missions housed, fed, and looked after stranded Pakistani’s while securing them a safe passage home. The Foreign Office established a dedicated 24/7 Crisis Management Unit specifically for the purpose of repatriating stranded Pakistani’s.
Pakistan spearheaded an initiative for global debt relief for developing economies in Covid hit nations, resulting in relief from the IMF, G-20, and World Bank. Pakistan has offered to share Covid19 best practices at every multilateral forum: from the SCO to SAARC to OIC.it also undertook a series of humanitarian missions across the world for COVID19 and beyond: to this end, Pakistan sent medical aid to the U.S and Syria. Pakistan also sent relief to Niger for flood-affected and to Lebanon for victims of the blast. Under thought leadership platform VISION F.O, launching the ‘Foreign Minister’s Honours List’, celebrating those diaspora community members who brought positive and progressive impact to the countries in which they live and work. This August 2020, Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi honored specifically those diaspora members who demonstrated an exceptional contribution to their local communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Pakistan’s UN peacekeepers continue to serve as bastions of humanity across the globe Pakistan, in collaboration with the UNHCR organized an International Conference to mark ’40 Years of Afghan Refugees’ Presence in Pakistan.