The Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI) organized a webinar titled “Pakistan and the United Nations at 75: Past, Present and Future” on August 31, 2020. Former Senator and federal minister, Mr. Javed Jabbar was the Chief Guest at the occasion. Dr. Maleeha Lodhi, former ambassador and Pakistan’s Representative to the United Nations was the keynote speaker. Other speakers at the occasion included: former Senator and minister, Mr. Nisar Memon and Dr. Tughral Yamin, Associate Dean, Centre for International Peace and Stability (CIPS) at NUST. The UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator, Mr. Julian Harneis also expressed his views via a video message.
The webinar was moderated by Mr. Najam Rafique, Director Research at the ISSI, who stated that the UN gave new hope for peace to the future generations following the disastrous Second World War – the most savage and destructive war in the history of mankind which consumed half of the world. Even though the UN has helped end conflicts and foster reconciliation by conducting successful humanitarian and peacekeeping operations in dozens of countries, the world has seen countless wars, some of them still ongoing. These conflicts continue to fester under the watch of the UN and include the dispute in Kashmir, Palestine, Middle East and Africa. These conflicts continue to plague the organization, not because it has failed, but mostly because of the right to veto at the disposal of the permanent five members out of the member states of 193. As a result, millions have been killed and displaced and the world continues to be mired in conflict. The COVID-19 pandemic has made these challenges even bigger. He also stated that in order to face the upcoming difficulties like the expected global financial crises, which are likely to worsen in 2020, the organization must re-imagine effective multilateralism to fight the challenges of the current time.