Terrorism and legitimate freedom struggle should be differentiated: Lodhi
NEW YORK: Pakistan’s envoy to the United Nations, Maleeha Lodhi said that the international consensus against terrorism should not be manipulated to justify the suppression of people struggling for the right to self-determination.
Speaking in the Sixth Committee of the General Assembly on ‘Measures to Eliminate International Terrorism’, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN Maleeha Lodhi called for a distinction to be drawn between acts of terrorism, which should be unequivocally condemned in all its forms and manifestations, and the legitimate struggles of oppressed people living under foreign occupation.
Ambassador Lodhi pointed out that terrorism remained one of the most complex and imposing challenges of our time.
Pakistan, she declared, has been the victim of terrorism for several decades. The country, she added, has lost much blood and treasure in its campaign against terrorism.
Yet, she said, “terrorists and their evil actions have never shaken my country’s resolve and determination to persist in the fight to defeat it.”
The Pakistani envoy said that the country’s successful multi-pronged approach had resulted in dismantling of terrorist sanctuaries from its soil.
She pointed out that the principal threat of terrorism faced by Pakistan today was primarily supported and perpetrated from beyond its borders.
“Chronic instability due to conflicts and military interventions has provided fertile ground to terrorists to recruit followers and spread their ideology”, she stressed. Terrorists and their supporters are obviously able to find safe havens in ungoverned conflict areas, she added.
She said while the UN is focusing on improving technical measures, it is Pakistan’s firm belief that extremist ideology can never be countered unless we deal with the geopolitical dynamics which fuel terrorism.