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Sustainable peace-building needs inclusive political process: Lodhi

UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan said that the sustainability of gains in peacekeeping operations needs a political processes which prevents any relapse into conflict.

Speaking in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in the debate on the Peacebuilding Commission and Peacebuilding Fund, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN, Maleeha Lodhi, stressed the need to keep the UN Peacebuilding Commission (PBC) financially strong so as to enable the 31-member intergovernmental body meet the post-conflict needs of countries emerging from turmoil.

She called on the international community to invest in the peacebuilding which entails adequate funding and capacity building of state institutions.

Peace, the Pakistani envoy also emphasized, is sustained when its foundations are based on inclusiveness.

“Nationally owned political processes must therefore be supported as only they can chart a sustainable path forward” she stated.

While noting the significant contribution of the UN’s Peacebuilding Commission over the years to support the efforts of countries emerging from conflict, Ambassador Lodhi stressed the critical role of the Commission in transition situations following conclusion of peacekeeping operations.

Peacekeeping efforts, therefore, should build on the work of UN peacekeepers to consolidate the efforts of blue helmets on the ground, she argued.

Ambassador Lodhi told the 193-member world body that as a founding member of the Commission, Pakistan, believed that peacebuilding was the natural and indispensable successor of peacekeeping.

She also told the General Assembly that Pakistan, along with Japan and Norway, was championing innovative financing to augment existing financial streams for the Peacebuilding Fund.

“We fully understand the importance of funding in peacebuilding”, she said and added that Pakistan looked forward to engaging with stakeholders in the system to explore options for strengthening the Fund both in terms of resources and utilization mechanisms.

Ambassador Lodhi welcomed the Commission’s emphasis on enhancing international and regional engagement with national governments.

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