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ISLAMABAD: Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar is most likely to represent Pakistan at the 78th Session of the UN General Assembly in New York next month.

Sources in Pakistan’s Permanent Mission in New York told Business Recorder that registration for the participation of the caretaker prime minister in the UNGA’s session was done well before the end of the previous elected government’s tenure.

However, they said that preparations are still underway to finalise the visit and the permanent mission is in close touch with the Foreign Office as well as the office of the caretaker prime minister with regard to the trip.

“Till today, we cannot give a final confirmation, but caretaker Prime Minister Kakar is most likely to represent Pakistan at the UNGA session,” said another source at the Foreign Office, who also stated that interim Foreign Minister Jalil Abbas Jilani along with a small delegation comprising high officers of the Foreign Office and a few cabinet members may also accompany the caretaker premier.

The regular session of the UN General Assembly will kick off on September 5 and the general debate will open on September 19 and the dates of the caretaker prime minister’s trip will be decided later once the schedule is finalised, he added.

Unlike an elected prime minister, the mandate of the caretaker premier is limited and the sources maintained that the Foreign Office is advising Kakar to lead Pakistan’s delegation to the top UN forum with an objective to ensure the country’s representation at the highest level.

They said that the caretaker premier is expected to present Pakistan’s position on important regional and international issues, Afghanistan, the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the unresolved disputes such as Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir, Palestine, the growing Islamophobia in the West, and the challenge of climate change during his speech to the UNGA session.

During his speech, the sources added that Kakar may also express his commitment before the UN forum with regard to his constitutional obligation of holding free, fair, and transparent general elections in the country as well as his interaction with world leaders at the sidelines.

About the sidelines meetings of the caretaker prime minister, the sources said that efforts are underway at the diplomatic channels with various countries, particularly with friendly countries and other Western partners to schedule bilateral meetings at the sidelines at the UN headquarters.

When asked whether Kakar will also be holding meetings with heads of the international financial institutions particularly with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) given the limited mandate, a senior diplomat said that efforts are underway to make the trip productive by scheduling his engagement with the global leaders as well as heads of the international financial organisations.

“We don’t have a schedule of the sideline meetings as yet. We believe that it’s the high platform of the UN and with the presence of the global leaders and heads of various organisations, it would be an opportunity for us to present Pakistan’s perspective. Many of them will also be interested to hear from the caretaker premier about the interim government’s commitment to honour international obligations,” he added.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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Shariq Aug 23, 2023 11:45am
Job has lots of recreation TA and DA!
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