Pakistan asks US for help to organize Covid vaccine
Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi requested the role of the United States in organizing the coronavirus vaccine for Pakistan, as the country was unable to secure a supply commitment under the COVAX of the World Health Organization (WHO) due to excessive global demand.
Speaking to reporters in New York, the Foreign Secretary said during his virtual interactions with US Congressman Tom Suozzi and Senator Lindsey Graham, he found that they wanted to engage with Pakistan as they could not deny the importance of Pakistan.
During his media interaction on Friday, Qureshi was accompanied by Pakistani Ambassador Asad Majeed Khan and Permanent Representative to the UN Munir Akram. He said he discussed the Covid situation, bilateral relations, as well as the issues of Palestine, Kashmir and Afghanistan with US lawmakers.
Foreign Minister Qureshi also told reporters that he was researching the role of the United States in organizing vaccines for Pakistan because the country could not secure the offer committed under COVAX, due to excessive global demand.
The foreign minister told reporters that Pakistan and the United States have decided to strengthen bilateral engagement by taking advantage of modern communication tools. “Therefore, a select group of members of Congress would hold a meeting with the Pakistani authorities in June,” he said.
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“Members of Congress would also be invited to a meeting at the next UNGA session, which may be held physically. Thirdly, they will be invited to Pakistan in October, which will also help dispel their misconceptions about Pakistan, in addition to giving them a better understanding of the country. “
The Foreign Minister arrived in the United States with his counterparts from Turkey, Palestine and Tunisia to address the special session of the United Nations General Assembly on Thursday on the deteriorating situation in Palestine.
The session of the UNGA was convened at the joint request of the OIC, the Arab Group and the Non-Aligned Movement for the sole purpose of improving the Palestinian situation with a ceasefire being the first step. Qureshi called the session “efficient and productive”.
Qureshi said the Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire was the “first step towards improvement,” but demanded constant vigilance on the part of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation (OIC), the Movement of Nations non-aligned (NAM) and the media to achieve its sustainability.
“Special vigilance will be required from OIC, NAM and the most important role is that of the media. You are free and your reporting can shake the conscience which has also done it and turned the tide, ”Qureshi said, adding that the media had helped change the narrative but the pressure from public opinion had to be maintained.
He said they got the ceasefire intimation during the UNGA session that followed the debate and protests in various capitals around the world, triggered by the uncensored video clips shared by reporters. citizens.
The need for a UNGA session emerged as four UN Security Council meetings ended without result and failed to reach consensus, he said. He stressed that lasting peace in South Asia and the Middle East cannot be achieved without resolving the differences in Kashmir and Palestine.
He told reporters that during his meetings with United Nations General Assembly President Volkan Bozkir and Secretary General Antonio Guterres, he asked them to continue their efforts until the dispute is resolved because “a simple ceasefire -fire was not enough ”.
Responding to a question, the Foreign Minister said Pakistan’s position on the situation in Palestine is to end the killings, establish peace, resolve differences through dialogue and seek the two-state solution. .
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He added that in his statement to the UNGA, he highlighted the “complete similarities” between Kashmir and Palestine – the two peoples face killings, denial of the right to self-determination, restructuring. demographic, destruction of infrastructure and economic collapse.
Asked about his remarks during his CNN In Thursday’s interview, what the host called “anti-Semitic,” the foreign minister said the accusation elicited a strong reaction not only from Pakistan but from the Muslim world. He said the host looked stressed, which she also addressed to him as a diplomat. He added that he didn’t know if his interaction was scripted.