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KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that the unresolved Kashmir dispute and the unrelenting brutality of the Indian government against the people of occupied Kashmir is a serious cause for concern for the world.

“Their suffering continues unabated and so does their resolve to decide their future themselves,” said the chief minister while speaking at the “75th Anniversary Conference on Pakistan and the Changing Global Order” organised by the Pakistan Institute of International Affairs (PIIA) here on Wednesday.

“Whatever the issues and the approach, I believe that achieving peace is the ultimate goal of all governments. We realise that the world is mired in conflicts and divisions for reasons which are historical and geographical. Hence a concerted approach to all issues and challenges within and outside Pakistan is the need of the hour,” he remarked.

Murad Ali Shah said that in the recent years there has been a shift of geopolitical power from the West to the East. “We have witnessed the rise of Asia, especially through ASEAN, a resilient Africa, and more importantly an assertive China with its expanding outreach through its Belt and Road Initiative, and a resurgent Russia,” he said.

He expressed the hope that recommendations emerging from the conference will facilitate formulation of policies that may help resolve contemporary problems.

In her welcome address, PIIA’s Chairperson Dr Masuma Hasan said that the two-day conference had brought together diplomats and scholars from Pakistan as well as from Sri Lanka, Nepal, China, Russia, the United States of America, and the United Kingdom.

“Their collective wisdom and expertise will contribute to the understanding of global and regional issues, changes in the global order, shifting perspectives, new horizons, Pakistan’s foreign policy, its economy and connectivity, and the security challenges it faces,” she said.

The keynote address was delivered by Ambassador Ashraf Jehangir Qazi in which he pointed out that “climate change has become the overwhelming context for any discussion on national or international affairs”.

The second session of the day — entitled “From a Unipolar to a Multipolar World” — was chaired by Ambassador Najmuddin Shaikh, a former foreign secretary of Pakistan, while its key speakers were Dr Mabel Lu Miao from China, Dr Kerry Brown from the UK, and Dr Bakare Najmideen from NUST.

The third session was on “Issues of International Concern” and its key speakers included former additional director general of FIA Ammar Jaffri, Dr Rabia Akhtar from the UoL, and Ali Tauqeer Sheikh.

A parallel session on Afghanistan was chaired by Ambassador Mohammad Sadiq, the special representative of the prime minister for Afghanistan, and the speakers were Dr Anatol Lieven from the US, Zahid Hussain, and Hasina Jalal from Washington DC.

The last session of the day was titled “Nuclear Panacea in a Global Perspective”, which was chaired by Lt Gen (Retd) Khalid Ahmed Kidwai, adviser to the National Command Authority (NCA) and former director general of the Strategic Plans Division, Islamabad.

The key speakers of this session were Dr Anita Nilsson from Washington DC, Dr Ansar Pervez, adviser to the NCA on nuclear power, and Dr Happymon Jacob from New Delhi.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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