‘Floods, melting ice, food insecurity big threats’

CM Murad says geopolitical power shifting from West to East

Our Correspondent December 15, 2022
Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah. PHOTO: FILE


Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that in recent years we have seen the shift of geopolitical power from the West to the East and have witnessed the rise of Asia, especially through ASEAN, a resilient Africa and more importantly, China with its expanding outreach through its Belt and Road Initiative, and a resurgent Russia.

This he said while speaking at the 75th Anniversary Conference of The Pakistan Institute of International Affairs (PIIA) on Pakistan and the Changing Global Order at a local hotel.

He said the PIIA has puts on the table every issue of contemporary importance in the changing global order, which would be addressed by a galaxy of scholars and diplomats from Pakistan and abroad.

"The changing world order will take time to find a new equilibrium," he said.

Shah said that the world was mired by conflicts and divisions for historical and geographical reasons.

"Therefore, a concerted approach to all issues and challenges within and outside Pakistan is the need of the hour," he suggested.

Shah said, "We are the beneficiaries of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which will bring vast economic benefits to our country, as the programme points out the significance of the development of Gwadar Port for the economy of Pakistan." The CM said that our region was beset with unsettled issues.

"The unresolved Kashmir issue and the unrelenting brutality of the Indian government against the Kashmiri people is a cause of universal concern," he said and added their suffering continued unabated and so did their resolve to decide their own future.

Shah said that the stability in Afghanistan was a challenge to all players in the region.

"Pakistan faces its own challenges not only of border security but also of water and food security," he said.

The CM said, Pakistan is the fifth largest country in the world and has been an active and progressive power on the world stage.

He added that in the changing global order, it was one of the nine declared nuclear powers.

"Pakistan is a responsible nuclear power which has always used nuclear energy for peaceful purposes," he said.

"Even as a young nation, Pakistan stood by countries struggling against colonial rule and lobbied for their independence from their colonial masters," Shah said adding that Pakistan is one of the foremost providers of peacekeepers to the United Nations forces.

He added, Pakistan is a member of inter-governmental organisations such as the Organization for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) - one of the largest regional organisations in the world that has always tried to build a consensus and played a positive role in these organisations.

The CM said, "Many countries of the world, including Pakistan, which are not responsible for the emerging climate catastrophe, are afflicted by the effects of climate change." The CM said that the climate change has ravaged our country during the recent flooding.

"Bringing relief to people displaced by the floods has been a major challenge for my government," he said and added, but, we have put our hearts and souls in the efforts to rehabilitate them.

According to the CM, Sindh is the first province to enact a law against domestic violence 'The Domestic Violence, Prevention and Protection) Act, 2013 and the landmark 'The Sindh Child Marriages Restraint Act, 2013'.

These laws, when invoked by the victims - which may take time - will bring stability to our society.

The CM said that Pakistan, with an access to the Arabian Sea, its Gawadar Port is important to Pakistan due to its prime location.

The CM said, "Over-flowing rivers, melting sea ice, food insecurities, all are threatening our future and creating new tensions among competing powers at the top of the world," he said and added that experts were now studying convergence of climate change and national security.


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