NEW YORK: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who had an overnight stopover in London, will reach New York today (Wednesday) to deliver an important speech at the 69th annual session of the United Nations General Assembly on September 26.
The city is already abuzz with discussions on not only what is going to take place in the session but also on what is expected to happen on the fringes of the summit where leaders from across the globe will be in attendance.
Premier Nawaz’s visit to the United States and his address to the UN General Assembly are significant in more than one way as it will reflect Islamabad’s future policy on international issues. Officials close to the premier say that he is expected to raise issues facing Pakistan.
Before departing for the US, the prime minister held an important meeting with army chief General Raheel Sharif and consulted him on a host of issues so that he could put forward Pakistan’s policy vis-à-vis Afghanistan, India and Kashmir more effectively.
Officials say the prime minister’s address to the United Nations General Assembly will certainly shed light on the issues that are important from the perspective of Pakistan’s military.
Though the Pakistani and Indian premiers will be in New York, there is hardly any chance of a one-on-one meeting between them. Indian leader Narendra Modi will reach New York on Friday while Nawaz Sharif will be returning home the next day. If there is any likelihood of their meeting they will have to arrange it keeping in view the short span of their stay in the city.
Nawaz will co-chair the UN peacekeeping summit along with US Vice President Joe Biden and other world leaders. Pakistan has contributed a lot to UN peacekeeping missions. He will attend an important energy conference along with heads of state from Sweden and Denmark where these countries will find ways on how to help Pakistan find alternative energy resources.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 24th, 2014.