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Focus on United Nations Peacekeeping Special Feature Music and intercultural dialogue

REAL LIVES: STORIES THAT INSPIRE US Kangaroo mother care helping preterm babies survive. Page 32


Developing the food value chain in two provinces of Pakistan Page 41


Photo Exhibition on Sustainable Development Goals kicks off in Karachi. Page 79


UNDP Haoliang Xu visits Pakistan. Page 98


World Press Freedom Day. Page 99

MESSAGES FROM SECRETARY-GENERAL International Africa Day. Page 105


The United Nations Pakistan Newsletter is produced by the United Nations Communications Group

Editor in Chief: Vittorio Cammarota, Director, United Nations Information Centre Sub Editor: Chiara Hartmann Producer (photography): Umair Khaliq Producer (content): Ishrat Rizvi Graphic Designer: Mirko Neri Contributors: Qaiser Khan Afridi, Mahira Afzal, Rizwana Asad, Anoushka Boteju, Noman Burki, Priyanka Chowdhury, Douglas T. Coffman, Camila Ferro, Mehr Hassan, Hamza Hasan, Mahwish Humayun, Anita Ilyas, Athar Iqbal, Humera Kareem, Naeem Khalid, Abid Niaz Khan, Imran Khan, Adresh Laghari, Lt Col Hammad Latif, Tahir Liaqat, Abdul Sami Malik, Samia Mani, Waqas Rafique, Ishrat Rizvi, Zikrea Saleh, Ishrat Saleem, Dr Khalid Saeed, Faria Salman, Col Najam Us Saqib, Asif Shahzad, Dr Saba Shuja, Uzaira Tasneem, Maryam Younus.


United Nations Pakistan / Magazine / 3 / 2017

Note from the editor

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|16| Finding rapport with local women on the field


Peacekeeping is cost effective, but must adapt to new reality

|17| Lieutenant Colonel Najam Us Saqib: a remarkable peacekeeper


An overview of UN Peacekeeping

|18| United Nations peacekeepers honoured on the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers

|8| Inerview – Jean-Pierre Lacroix |10| Evolving role of UN peacekeeping |11| Training the peacekeepers |12| Facilitating the observers’ work |13| Reflections of a veteran peacekeeper |14| Captain Sandra Katic recognized for service |15| A female observer navigates gendered spacesy

|19| Five fallen Pakistani peacekeepers honoured UN medals posthumously |20| UN Cinema celebrates the role of female peacekeepers |21| Interview – Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy

|24| An overview of Pakistan’s contributions to UN Peacekeeping |25| Pakistan’s Formed Police Unit for stability in Haiti |26| Pakistani peacekeepers host medical camps in East Darfur |28| Pakistani contingent inaugurates water station in West Darfur |29| Pakistani peacekeepers support engineering project in Ardamata, West Darfur |31| Pakistan donates Asphalt plant to the government of Liberia (Monrovia)

|22| Communicating for peacekeeping |23| An overview of the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan |62| Making public transport safe for women

|91| Quote – Dr. Jens Jokisch

real lives: stories that inspire us

health and nutrition

|92| Quote – H.E. Mr. Takashi KURAI

|32| Kangaroo mother care helping preterm babies survive

|63| Stunting and wasting, a major threat for child survival and development in South Asian nations

|92| Quote – Ustad Nafees Ahmed Khan

|33| Progressing towards peace and development

|64| Saudi Arabia provides dates to disadvantaged people

|34| Passion for change

|65| Commemorating World Family Doctor Day

|94| Interview – Nigel Bobby

|35| Building responsible citizenship |36| Young volunteers spark civic engagement |37| Expanding horizons through volunteering |38| Building civic engagement in marginalized communities |39| A young adult rejects violence |40| Improving Mehri’s life through skill development trainings in Chitral news and events agriculture and food security

human rights

|66| Training programme on human rights

for Pakistani and Afghan documentary makers

industrial and economic development

67| Women entrepreneurship – supporting smart economies |68| Pakistani cleantech innovators participate in important forum on clean energy |69| Together with the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for peaceful sustainable development

|93| Interview – Anita |94| Interview – Haider Chao |95| Interview – Faisal Masih |96| Interview – Sajar Nafees |96| Interview – Areeba Niazi |97| Interview – Muhammad Waqas guest in town

|98| UNDP Haoliang Xu visits Pakistan on air

|99| World Press Freedom Day

|41| Developing the food value chain in two provinces of Pakistan

|70| Cluster development training in Lahore

|42| Canada funds strategic humanitarian response facility in Gilgit, Pakistan

|71| Social dialogue on labour laws in Balochistan

|100| “World This Morning” with Maestro Jun Kanno on music and cultural diversity

|72| Orientation on international labour standards in Balochistan

|100| Governance of climate change finance


|102| Creating awareness on benefits of exclusive breastfeeding

|43| Planting for tomorrow |44| Supporting food security |45| Rebuilding lives in Kurram Agency |46| Developing a sustainable and competitive dairy sector |47| The USA contribute to improving lives of vulnerable Pakistanis climate change

|48| Environment Day |50| Partnering with Punjab to reduce smog disaster risk management

|51| World Environment Day drugs and crime


|73| Capacity building workshop on counter trafficking and migrant smuggling refugees and displaced persons

|74| Displaced people receive shelter material |76| Handicraft products by Afghan refugees showcase |77| Establishing a centre for refugees and migration studies in Quetta |78| Australia backs assistance to undocumented Afghans in Pakistan one united nations

|53| Enhancing coordination and cooperation amongst law enforcement agencies

|79| Photo Exhibition on Sustainable Development Goals kicks off in Karachi

|54| Controlling the diversion of precursor chemicals

|81| FAO Pakistan welcomes its new Country Representative

|56| Training on trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants held in Balochistan |57| Training of trainers conducted in Islamabad

|82| Investing in Information and communication technologies and quality education to promote lasting peace


music and intercultural dialogue

|59| Secondary school girls in Pakistan benefit from cash-based assistance

|86| World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development

freedom of press

|87| Maestro Jun Kanno visits Pakistan to celebrate cultural diversity through music

gender equality and women’s empowerment

|103| Promoting awareness on sustainable technologies in Pakistan messages from secretary-general

|104| World Press Freedom Day – 3 May |104| Day of Vesak – 10 May |104| International Africa Day – 25 May |105| Secretary-General calls for peace, end to suffering, in message on Ramadan – 27 May |105| International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers: investing in peace around the world – 29 May |106| World Environment Day – 5 June |106| World Refugee Day – 20 June |106| World Oceans Day – 8 June |107| International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking – 26 June photo album

special feature

|61| Celebrating World Press Freedom Day in Peshawar

|102| Youth and social cohesion

|84| #TeachSDGS

|58| Revised immigration handbook and operational strategy validated

|60| World Press Freedom Day

|101| Water security in Pakistan

|75| Skills development for Afghan refugees

|52| The judicial education system and the role of its academies

|55| E-learning available at law enforcement training centres

|99| Youth, volunteerism and development

|88| Interview – Maestro Jun Kanno |90| Interview – Vittorio Cammarota |91| Quote – Dr. Brigitta Blaha

|108| Photo album

note from the editor

The third issue of the United Nations Pakistan magazine for 2017 focuses on the United Nations efforts towards peacekeeping, one of the most effective tools available in assisting host countries to navigate the difficult path from conflict to peace. Following the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers, we bring you features touching upon UN peacekeepers efforts worldwide and in Pakistan, which is the third largest contributor of military and police personnel towards this cause, with more than 7100 deployed personnel in a variety of countries. Pakistani peacekeepers’ activities in missions such as the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan are highlighted, along with honouring those who have fallen, the role of women in this field, and initiatives by various agencies to progress towards lasting peace and development. In light of the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, this issue’s special feature focuses on the importance of promoting culture and highlighting the significance of its diversity towards human rights, peace and positive change in society. Music was praised as a universal language that transcends all borders and connects people from all cultures. In this light, internationally acclaimed pianist Jun Kanno visited Pakistan and performed with the National Academy of Performing Arts musicians in Karachi to mark the occasion. This month, Pakistan also had the honour of hosting UN Assistant Secretary General Haoliang Xu on a four-

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


day visit, where he met Government officials from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and reiterated his support for community resilience, rule of law, youth engagement, employment and development in the province. In this issue we also share information on several development activities undertaken by different UN agencies in the areas of climate change, refugees, drug and crime prevention, gender equality, and education. In addition, a number of important UN observances were commemorated in the past months, including World Environment Day, World Press Freedom Day, World Family Doctor Day, and World Milk Day. This edition includes stories about our activities to promote these days, and our efforts to achieve the SDGs behind them I would like to express my gratitude to the members of the UN Communications Group and the UN Country Team for their continued support for this magazine and for working in partnership to communicate and help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in Pakistan. Vittorio Cammarota Director, United Nations Information Centre (UNIC)

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Peacekeeping is cost effective, but must adapt to new reality

United Nations peacekeepers place themselves in harm’s way every day, between armed groups that are trying to kill each other or to hurt civilians. Countless lives have been saved and improved by UN peacekeeping over the past seventy years; families ravaged by war have been given a new start. Independent research has shown the worth of peacekeeping: it prevents the spread of violence; and it typically reduces the numbers of civilians killed by more than 90 percent, compared to before deployment. We also know peacekeeping is cost-effective. The UN peacekeeping budget is less than half of 1 percent of global military spending, and is shared between all 193 UN Member States. US studies show that UN peacekeeping missions are an estimated 8 times more cost-effective than when the US acts alone. That investment pays off dramatically when we consider the economic growth and prosperity that follows from increased stability and security after successful peacekeeping missions. The emergence of global terrorism means that instability anywhere is a threat everywhere. United Nations peacekeeping operations are on the frontlines of our efforts to prevent the emergence of lawless regions where insecurity, transnational crime and extremism can flourish.

Our missions have contributed to a legacy of stability, development and economic growth. Fifty-four operations have completed their mandates and closed; two more will do so in the months ahead. While the United Nations is facing up to the challenges and shortcomings of our peacekeeping efforts, we should also recognize the successes of our mission for peace. Peace in our world may seem like an abstract concept. But peace on the ground depends on gruelingly hard work, every day, under difficult and dangerous conditions. Too often, United Nations peace operations face a gap between goals and the means to achieve them. In many places, peacekeepers are deployed where warring parties show little commitment to peace. Our missions are increasingly targeted by parties to conflict and violent extremists. Dealing with this new reality requires a serious strategic reform, based on an analysis of the mandates and capacities of our missions and our partnerships with governments and others. We must adapt peace operations to the dangerous and challenging environments they now face. We have already made reforms that have reduced costs significantly and have given us greater flexibility to deploy peacekeepers at short notice. But more remains to be done. I am determined to work with governments, regional organizations and other partners to make sure peacekeeping has the tools and rules it needs. United Nations peacekeeping has

been tarnished in recent years by appalling cases of sexual exploitation and abuse that are an outrageous violation of everything we value. Tackling this scourge is a priority for the whole United Nations system. I have presented a plan to all UN Member States that is aimed at ending impunity, and will create victims’ rights advocates in our peacekeeping missions and at UN headquarters. I intend to mobilize world leaders around these critical steps. When people around the world are asked about their priorities, they give the same response. They want safety and security, to raise their children in peace and give them education and opportunities to shape their future. United Nations peacekeepers are one of the ways in which we deliver on that universal aspiration and make the world safer for everyone. António Guterres Secretary-General of the United Nations


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An overview of UN Peacekeeping

Since 1948 United Nations Peacekeeping helps countries torn by conflict to create conditions for lasting peace. Peacekeeping has proven to be one of the most effective tools available in assisting host countries to navigate the difficult path from conflict to peace. Peacekeeping has unique strengths, including legitimacy, burden sharing, and an ability to deploy and sustain troops and police from around the globe, integrating them with civilian peacekeepers to advance multidi-

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


mensional mandates. It is guided by the three basic principles of consent of the parties, impartiality, and the non-use of force except in self-defence and defence of the mandate. Peacekeeping is flexible and over the past two decades has been deployed in many configurations. There are currently 16 UN peacekeeping operations deployed in four continents. Success is never guaranteed, because UN Peacekeeping almost by

definition goes to the most physically and politically difficult environments. However, there has been a demonstrable record of success over 60 years, including winning the Nobel Peace Prize. Peacekeeping has always been highly dynamic and has evolved in the face of new challenges. Former Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon established a 17-member High-level Independent Panel on UN Peace Operations to make a comprehensive assessment of the state of UN

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peace operations today, and the emerging needs of the future. Peacekeeping is one among a range of activities undertaken by the United Nations to maintain international peace and security throughout the world. The others are conflict prevention and mediation, peacemak-

measures, including the use of military force. It requires the explicit authorization of the Security Council. Peacebuilding aims to reduce the risk of lapsing or relapsing into conflict by strengthening national capacities at all levels for conflict management, and to lay the foundation

ing, peace enforcement, and peacebuilding. Conflict prevention involves diplomatic measures to keep intra-state or inter-state tensions and disputes from escalating into violent conflict, through early warning, information gathering and a careful analysis of the factors driving the conflict. Peacemaking generally includes measures to address conflicts in progress and usually involves diplomatic action to bring hostile parties to a negotiated agreement. Peace enforcement involves the application of a range of coercive

for sustainable peace and development. It is a complex, long-term process of creating the necessary conditions for sustainable peace. Experience has shown that all these activities should be seen as mutually reinforcing, in order to provide the comprehensive approach required to address the root causes of conflict and reduce the risk of it recurring. Today’s multidimensional peacekeeping operations facilitate the political process, protect civilians, assist in the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of former

combatants; support the organization of elections, protect and promote human rights and assist in restoring the rule of law.


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Jean-Pierre Lacroix

Jean-Pierre Lacroix Under-Secretary-General, Department of the United Nations Peacekeeping Operations

Jean-Pierre Lacroix took up his post as the new U n d e r- S e c r e tary General for Peacekeeping Operations at the beginning of April 2017. The French national, who has more than 25 years of political and diplomatic experience, currently oversees 16 UN peacekeeping operations deployed on four continents. UN peacekeepers go to the most physically and politically difficult environments, some making the ultimate sacrifice – as evidenced by the more than 3,500 peacekeepers who have lost their lives in the service of peace since UN deployments began in 1948. In an interview with UN News, the peacekeeping chief discusses a number of issues, including the challenges facing peace operations, his plans to make them more efficient and tackling sexual exploitation and abuse.

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


The UN Secretary-General António Guterres recently said that UN peace operations were at a crossroads and facing multiple challenges. Could you tell us more about these challenges? We are facing challenges in our operations, and should not forget that our peacekeepers are saving lives every day. They are protecting civilians and they are helping to implement peace processes. It is also important to recognize the added value of peacekeeping, and what we bring to the societies and nations that are destabilized. I think this has been recognized by the members of the Security Council when we had the debate on peacekeeping on April 6. We do face many challenges, in my opinion the most important include when operations on the ground doing their best but the political processes are not there for us to provide support. And we need everyone to support our operations to be very determined in making them move forward. We need the support of the Security Council as well to make sure we get the right kind of support. In some cases, we don’t receive this from host governments. Our operations quite often function in very challenging security environments, and we need to make sure we can cope with this. It’s a question of posture, equipment, organizing ourselves so that we can both protect our peacekeepers better, civilians as well as uniformed, and better protect the populations we are serving.

The Secretary-General mentioned nine areas of reform for UN peacekeeping. What are your plans in the coming months to make peacekeeping operations more efficient? One of the things that the Secretary-General mentioned, beyond the importance of pursuing political solutions which is really key, is that we have to make sure that we always have the right kind of deployment on the ground, that we optimize our resources and that the mandates are at any given moment the most adequate for the situation which we are dealing with. We have to make sure that our mandates are evolving consistent with the needs on the ground. They have to be prioritized. We have to make sure that whenever we can, we terminate peacekeeping operations or downsize them, and that there is an ongoing process of modernizing them. It has to do with training; making sure that we have more contributions from troop-contributing countries and also those countries who contribute civilian personnel and police, more contributions that are ready to deploy; modernizing equipment, and resorting to new technologies. One very important issue is to increase the number of female personnel – civilian, police and military. It is a question of gender parity, although parity has a long way to go, especially when we talk about military and police. But it especially involves efficiency, because as peacekeepers we have to engage with the population and are in a much better place to do that when we can rely on

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female personnel. So this is something we will be pursuing with very strong determination.

What support do you expect from Member States to help UN peacekeeping operations deliver on the ground? Firstly we need their continuous political support to peacekeeping. This is absolutely key if we want to succeed. And obviously, we need their support in terms of resources. We need the finances from Member States and the right kind of resources for our operations, even though we are making a very strong and determined effort to optimize our resources, as well as to downsize and terminate peacekeeping operations whenever it is possible. We also need the contributions of Member States for troops, equipment etc. And here, a lot has been done. Since 2015 more contributions are forthcoming, that will be deployable in less time. We still have some shortfalls in critical capabilities for some of our operations. We are working very hard to convince Member States, and especially those who can come up with some sort of specific capabilities, to help us.

The UN has a new system-wide strategy to tackle sexual exploitation and abuse. What is UN peacekeeping doing for its part to prevent this kind of abuse? We have to be extremely firm and well organized. The Secretary-General has made the fight against sexual abuse one of his top priorities and the policies and decisions that have been made are very clear. We will do our best to

prevent and deal with allegations in a way that makes it clear that this determination is there. We have to be organized too. With the help of the Special Coordinator on improving the United Nations response to sexual exploitation and abuse, Jane Holl Lute, and with the participation of not only Department of Peacekeeping Operations but other departments. We are more responsive, and troop-contributing countries also are more responsive and more aware of the importance of dealing with sexual abuse and exploitation. I can really see that the determination of troop-contributing countries is much stronger. So we have to make sure that we have the right kind of response on the ground. We also need to make sure we address the plight of victims and we have put in place mechanisms whereby victims within our operations will have someone who is in charge of making sure that their concerns will be properly addressed.

The United Nations will celebrate the International Day of UN Peacekeepers on 29 May. What is your message to peacekeepers who sacrifice so much? A message of immense gratitude. They are doing a work that is extremely difficult and yet indispensable for the population they are protecting and they are serving. And they do it at immense risk. Many of our peacekeepers have paid the highest price for that. In 2016, 99 of our peacekeepers lost their lives as the result of their courageous engagement in serving the populations. Recently, six peacekeepers were murdered in the Central African Republic, and 10 peacekeepers wounded. And that

comes after a number of other incidents. I would also mention one recent death in Timbuktu, Mali. We owe them not only gratitude but all the support that we can give them. I think there is a sense of responsibility that we all have within the Department of Peacekeeping Operations. I can feel that very vividly. The team is committed, aware of the conditions in which our people and colleagues operate on the ground, and very dedicated to do their best to serve them.

And what is your message to the communities? We will continue to do everything we can to help the communities, the civilian populations whom we are there to help and to serve. Sometimes, it is extremely difficult and we don’t have enough resources to do everything we would like to do. But they can rest assured that our commitment and determination is very strong, even when we are facing the kinds of challenges that make it difficult. Protection of civilians, protection of the communities in the areas where we are deployed is really our central mission. We never forget that.


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Evolving role of UN peacekeeping United Nations’ peacekeeping operations are an investment and a tool in global peace and security, with an enormous impact on human lives all over the world. There are currently 15 UN peacekeeping operations deployed on four continents. United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) is one of them. On the 24 January 1949, the first group of Military Observers arrived in the state of Jammu and Kashmir in order to supervise the ceasefire between India and Pakistan, which makes it the second oldest peacekeeping mission in the world. UNMOGIP has remained in the area to observe and report to the Secretary General any developments pertaining to the strict observance of the ceasefire of 17 December 1971 under Security Council resolution 307. Our mission has had a positive impact on efforts to promote peace and stability in the region.While UNMOGIP remains a “traditional” cease-fire observation mission, international peacekeeping has evolved greatly in the last two decades. Historically, UN peacekeeping missions were mainly mandated to address conflict between regular armed forces both between and within states. Today, we are more and more seeing the added complexity of asymmetric and trans-boundary threats by

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


national and international groups of armed fighters and militants. Today’s multidimensional peacekeeping operations are called upon to maintain peace and security and more broadly to facilitate the political process, to protect civilians and to assist in the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of former combatants. Military, police and civilian peacekeepers are also called to support electoral processes, protect and promote human rights and assist in restoring and strengthening the rule of law and national institutions. The participation of women is essential to the effectiveness of peacekeeping and peacebuilding. Women bring their unique perspective and approach and reach out to areas of population inaccessible to their male counterparts

because of cultural restrictions. Female peacekeepers act as role models in the local environment, inspiring women and girls to advocate for their rights and to participate in the peace process.Striving towards gender parity amongst UN staff is a priority for the UN Secretary General. In peacekeeping operations, the figures are challenging. It is a strategic and an operational imperative that we concentrate our efforts, including through advocacy with Member States, on increasing the percentage of female peacekeepers, civilian, military and police, around the world. Major General Per Lodin Head of Mission and Chief Military Observer, United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan

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Training the peacekeepers

Pakistan has been in the business of peacekeeping for the past 57 years. Pakistani peacekeepers have excelled through their professionalism and high sense of duty. Their services to humanity have been commended by a number of high officials belonging to the UN and the international diplomatic community. For the past many years now Pakistan is one of the leading Troop Contributing Countries (TCC) in the world. Despite its own security commitments at home, Pakistan continues to provide troops for peacekeeping duties because this

forms one of the leading tenets of the country’s foreign policy. Under this overarching framework Pakistan considers it an international obligation to play its role in contributing towards international peace and stability. While peacekeeping forms part of the syllabi of all military schools and institutions and a peacekeeping cell had existed in the School of Infantry and Tactics in Quetta for a very long time, Pakistan did not have a dedicated centre for peacekeeping training. This void was covered in 2013, when the Centre for International Peace & Stability (CIPS) was launched in the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) Islamabad. CIPS had the unique honour of being inaugurated by the then UN Secretary General Mr Ban Ki-moon. Compared to traditional peacekeeping schools, CIPS provides a hybrid model i.e. here peacekeeping training is blended with scholarly research on peacekeeping through graduate courses. The peacekeeping courses organised in CIPS are recognised by the Integrated Training Service of the UN Department of Peacekeeping and the academic courses are certified by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) of Pakistan. In a very short time span CIPS has emerged as a centre for excellence in peacekeeping training and a

number of international students attend courses here. The training provided by CIPS to peacekeepers has been appreciated by all considered. The training parameters are constantly revised and kept on par with the latest trends in peacekeeping. Professor Tughral Yamin PhD, Associate Dean, Centre for International Peace and Stability National University of Science and Technology (NUST)


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Facilitating the observers’ work United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) is the second oldest peacekeeping mission of the United Nations, tasked with monitoring and reporting on the ceasefire agreement of 17 December 1971 between India and Pakistan. 44 UN Military Observers (UNMOs) carry out the strenuous task of monitoring the more than 740-kilometre long Line of Control and Working Boundary in the Jammu and Kashmir region. The role of Mission Support is to provide logistical and administrative support and services to the work of UNMOs who currently come from nine different countries. Although UNMOGIP is one of the small missions, its responsibility expands to both India and Pakistan, with alternating headquarters, Islamabad and Srinagar, a Liaison Office in New Delhi, four field stations on the Indian side and seven field stations on the Pakistani side of the Line of Control and Working Boundary – a total of 14 locations in a difficult terrain with extreme weather conditions. A competitive team of 49 national (41 Pakistani and 8 Indian) and 25 international civilian staff members carries out these tasks. The relocation of Jammu, Poonch and Rajouri field stations as well as the Liaison Office in New Delhi to new premises is an important development that took place in the past

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


one and a half years. Staff in Islamabad Headquarters worked closely with the Indian national staff to identify new facilities. The complexity of the task was to propose facilities suitable from all angles, including security and communications. The relocation process was successfully completed in time. While visiting some UNMOGIP field stations, the need for immediate renovations was noted. Mission Support made it a priority to improve the general infrastructures and provide UNMOs with better living conditions. An additional washroom was constructed at Kotli, while Skardu received a new fuel room. Plumbing was improved in all field stations on the Pakistani side. New air conditioners and water filtration systems were installed, generators have been put on automated systems in all field stations, and flagpoles were built. These look like minor details in the

overall work of UNMOGIP, but mean a lot to people working in the field and enhance staff efficiency. Improvements were also made in logistics and communications, which are critical for the safety of UNMOs. Mission Support has faced some challenges too during this time. The introduction of new automated systems such as Umoja, Field Support Suite and travel related software required staff to diversify and upgrade their skills. Likewise, new requirements by host nations regarding visas and entry permits have increased the workload of Mission Support but the team rises to the challenges. Nester Odaga-Jalomayo Chief of Mission Support United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan

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Reflections of a veteran peacekeeper Lieutenant Commander Robert Carlsson from Sweden is on his eighth stint as a peacekeeper at the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP). The 48-year-old is currently posted as Personnel and Manning Officer at UNMOGIP Headquarters in Islamabad. He joined the Swedish Navy as a conscript in 1989 and soon after went on his first peacekeeping assignment with the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon. After coming back he continued to pursue a military career and a decade later joined his second mission - United Nations Truce Supervision Organization - in the Middle East in 1999 as Captain. His next international posting was Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission in 2004 to monitor the ceasefire between the Government of Sri Lanka and the rebel Tamil Tigers during the Sri Lankan Civil War. He went back to Sweden and attended Staff College and rejoined the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission in 2005 as a staff officer. Before joining UNMOGIP in March 2016, he served in three more missions: UN Peacekeeping Mission in Sudan (2007), Temporary International Presence in Hebron (2010) and the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (2015).

When peacekeepers join a mission, they do so to contribute to a noble cause. Their work may not always fully achieve its purpose, but they nonetheless touch the lives of the people they meet. The UN Peacekeeping Mission in Sudan, where he served next, had helped Sudan hold a referendum in the insurgency-hit southern parts of the country in 2011 which led to the creation of South Sudan. However, two years after independence, fighting between forces loyal to President Kiir and those loyal to his former deputy Riek Machar plunged the country into conflict. His current Mission, UNMOGIP, has been monitoring the ceasefire between India and Pakistan for nearly seven decades. The gratitude from people Lt Cdr Carlsson meets during his field tasks is what keeps him going. In Sri Lanka, the village leaders told Lt

Cdr Carlsson they were grateful for the UN presence because whenever UN cars appeared, the situation calmed down. Sometimes, Lt Cdr Carlsson feels he has missed part of the childhood of his daughters while serving abroad but the gratitude from people he meets during his field tasks is what keeps him going. His experiences abroad have also informed his political views at home. In the wake of the migrant crisis in Europe and the influx of refugees from Syria and other countries into Sweden, many Swedish people have begun to think that their country cannot take more responsibility for the crisis.


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Captain Sandra Katic recognized for service Captain Sandra Kati of Croatia was recognized for completing 21 months of service with the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) at the Medal Parade in Islamabad. This enabled her to affix the numeral 4 to her UNMOGIP ribbon. Captain Kati first arrived at UNMOGIP in 2012 and completed her tour of duty in 2013. She rejoined the Mission on January 31, 2016. During her time there, she served at all the UN field stations on both sides of the Line of Control and Working Boundary. She said her work as a Military Observer was challenging but also rewarding. She was touched by the willingness to help and hospitality of the people she met in the field. Before joining UNMOGIP, Captain Kati served as an engineering officer in the Croatian Army’s Engineering Regiment. Croatia has been sending Military Observers to UNMOGIP since 2002 and has progressively increased their number, which currently stands at nine. From December 2005 to December 2007 Major General Dragutin Repinc, a Croatian, served as the Chief Military Observer-Head of Mission of UNMOGIP. Twice a year, UN Military Observers (UNMOs) gather at the Headquarters

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


in Islamabad for a conference and a Medal Parade. In the second Medal Parade held on 10 November 2016, the Chief Military Observer and Head of Mission Major General Per Lodin awarded medals to 35 UNMOs from nine countries. The first parade was held on 6 April 2016. UNMOs are eligible to receive a medal after three months of service with the Mission. The second time recipients can affix numeral 2 to the UNMOGIP ribbon. Since Captain Kati is serving the Mission for a second time, this was her fourth medal. The UNMOGIP ribbon bears a wide

central band in various shades of green to represent the Himalayan Range and the Kashmir Valley, flanked by narrow white stripes representing the snowcapped mountains. Two equal bars of UN blue appear at either end of the ribbon.

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A female observer navigates gendered spaces There were many firsts when Major Dokyoung Koo from South Korea joined UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP). This was her first peacekeeping mission, her first experience of working in the field and the first time someone from her department was chosen for such an assignment. She is among the five female Military Observers currently serving at UNMOGIP. Major Dokyoung Koo had been serving in the Republic of Korea Army for 12 years as a Public Affairs Officer when she was selected to join UNMOGIP. She received eight weeks of training before her assignment. In the field, she mainly conducted investigations, field trips, observation posts and area reconnaissance. This did not come without challenges. Often, locals would not talk to her or acknowledge her presence. She had to depend on her driver or male colleagues on such occasions. Although women are a minority in the South Korean armed forces, this was an entirely different experience. Major Koo soon found out that being a female officer could also be used as a strength in a culture that practices gender segregation. It gave her access to spaces where her male colleagues could not enter and it attracted attention of the local people, which she used to assert her presence as a wom-

an and a representative of the UN. Once, when invited by the local unit of the Pakistan Army in Domel to Independence Day celebrations, sitting in the female section at lunch, she met a local teacher who invited her to visit her school. To her surprise, she found most teachers to be women. Talking to them made her realize that they wanted to participate in social activities and were eager to get more education. Her former Officer in Charge Lieutenant Commander Robert Carlsson told The Observer that it is very useful to have female officers in the Mission. Major Koo said though people are reluctant to approach female officers due to cultural barriers, they are fascinated to see women in uniform. Major Koo

found a community within the Mission where people with different backgrounds are used to working together and extend this approach to working with women. Captain Robin Johansson from Sweden joined UNMOGIP in October and served under Major Koo in Domel for a month. He said having a female officer as a supervisor works well, because it is very clear to UN staff that respect is held for the position regardless of nationality, race or gender.


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Finding rapport with local women on the field Originally from Thailand, Orapim Pakdeesonkram was serving in the Royal Thai Air Force when selected as a UN peacekeeper for the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP). She has discovered the challenges of working as a female Military Observer in a patriarchal society, but after spending four months with UNMOGIP, she feels the experience was a very valuable one. Not many women are spotted along the Line of control, but when she has the chance to meet them, she likes to communicate with them. Her Officer in Charge at Domel has told her that being a woman will aid her in forming a rapport with the female local population. Orapim remembers going on her first patrol in Chinari, where in a traditional clothing store owned by a man she managed to make contact with an old woman sitting inside, and to her this was like a miracle. The two women talked and shared stories openly. During another field task Orapim noticed a vocational training centre for women in Dhirkot, where women learn skills like knitting, stitching, crochet, etc. They were all really happy to meet her and converse.

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On another day she went for a recce in a new area and decided to go to the local hospital, where she met a brilliant female doctor who had a deep understanding of social issues and world affairs. She recalls asking her about women’s role in Pakistan, and her answer positively surprising her. The doctor said that her religion never taught that women should not have an important role in society, but that nowadays people mix religion with social values. It’s the social values that restrict women, not religion. She also said that women have a crucial role in society, equally important to that of men. Education is important for women to be a force for their country and role models for their children. Through their own example, women may teach their

sons and daughters that they are strong and can play an active role in society. This conversation gave her a lot to think about from a different perspective. In general, Orapim is grateful for the opportunity to meet all these women along the way, and through her presence letting them know that there is nothing women are unable to do.

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Lieutenant Colonel Najam Us Saqib: a remarkable peacekeeper Coming from the Photohar region of Pakistan, Najam Us Saqib attended the Islamabad College for Boys. A bright scholar, he always ranked as one of the top three students of his class up until completing his secondary school certificate exams. He was always passionate about joining the Pakistani Army, looking up to his Brigadier uncle Sajjad as role model. Focusing on this goal, he was admitted to the Pakistani Army in 1998. During his Pakistan Military Academy training, he also kept up with his studies, and was awarded with a gold medal in International Relations during his graduation. After his commission, he performed his professional duties in different army garrisons of Pakistan including Sialkot, Peshawar, Lahore, Quetta, Gilgit, Gujranwala, Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), Nowshera, and Turbat. He had the honour of serving at the highest altitude battlefield of the world, Siachin Glaciers, in addition to the Kashmir region of Pakistan. On top of his professional courses inland and abroad, his contributions to UN Peacekeeping began in 2007, when he was selected as part of the Formed Police Unit (FPU) for the UN Peacekeeping mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), after his outstanding operational performance with the Frontier Corps in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. In Kosovo, he performed as Chief of Operation (COO) of the Pakistan Formed Police Unit from June 2007 to September 2008. After the success of the Pakistan Formed Police Unit peace-

keeping activities in Kosovo, UNMIK authorities extended the mission of Pakistan Formed Police Unit from 12 months to 16 months. This extension was in great part due to the contribution of its COO, Captain Najam Us Saqib, under whose supervision the unit was able to control the unrest of the Mitrovica prisoners in May 2008, when demonstrations occurred to protest their transfer to Dubrava prison, situated about 60 km away from Mitrovica city. The unit under Saqib’s supervision peacefully handled the prisoners after negotiation, despite their strong retaliation with Molotov cocktails and stone pelting and was successfully able to transport them from Mitrovica prison to Dubrava prison. The Pakistan Formed Police Unit was widely acknowledged by the UNMIK police commissioner and the military component (Force Commander) who was also present on the occasion. During the mission, Saqib was awarded with different certificates of appreciation and merit for his contributions to peacekeeping activities in relation to various operational and humanitarian aspects.In 2017, due to his outstanding performance with the Frontier Corps in Balochistan, he was selected again for another UN Peacekeeping mission, this time in the United Nations Stabilization Mission In Haiti (MINUSTAH) as Lieutenant Colonel, becoming Contingent Commander for the Pakistan Formed Police Unit again, after a 9-year hiatus. This distinguished him as an officer who has served in UN peacekeeping missions twice in the same setup Formed Police Unit , as its Chief of Operation and Contingent Commander, as Captain and

Lieutenant Colonel respectively. In Haiti, he continued to serve the Haitian population as part of the peacekeeping force, fostering stability, humanitarian work and various operational activities. As commander of Formed Police Unit , considering the economic and health conditions of Haiti in the country’s North Western region, he organized a free medical camp on the eve of UN peacekeeping day (29 May 2017) for treatment of local patients who were otherwise unable to access medical facilities because of living in remote areas. During this session more than 150 patients were treated, including provision of medicine, injections, and ECG tests. This effort was appreciated by both UN MINUSTAH authorities and the local population. The peacekeeping missions reflect his ambitions to serve the local population with commitment and dedication. He is one amongst the Pakistani Armed Forces officers who are contributing the peacekeeping activities all over the world while proudly representing his home country.


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United Nations peacekeepers honoured on the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers The United Nation Headquarters observed the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers on 24 May. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres laid a wreath to honour all fallen peacekeepers and presided over a ceremony where the Dag HammarskjĂśld Medal was awarded posthumously to 117 military, police and civilian personnel who lost their lives while serving in peacekeeping operations during 2016. The Secretary-General said that peacekeepers help bring peace and stability to war-torn societies around the world, and that the day serves to pay tribute to the more than 3,500 peacekeepers who have given their lives in the name of peace since 1948. He added that their sacrifice only strengthens commitment to ensuring the United Nations peacekeepers purpose in securing a better future where they are deployed. Jean-Pierre Lacroix, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations also paid his respects to the deceased peacekeepers, and said that is critical to keep investing in peace and carry forward their work. He stressed the continued

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pursuit of of reform efforts to make United Nations peacekeeping more efficient and effective. Today, more than 96,000 uniformed personnel from 124 troop-and-police-contributing countries serve under the blue flag, alongside more than 15,000 international and national civilian staff and nearly 1,600 United Nations Volunteers. The International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers was established by the General Assembly in 2002, to pay tribute to all men and women serving in peacekeeping, and to honour the memory of those who have lost their lives in the cause of peace. The Assembly designated 29 May as the Day because it was the date in 1948 when the United Nations Truce Supervision Organ-

ization (UNTSO), the world body’s first peacekeeping mission, began operations in Palestine.

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Five fallen Pakistani peacekeepers honoured UN medals posthumously Every year, on International Day of Peacekeepers, the Dag Hammarskjold awards posthumous medals to the peacekeepers who have sacrificed their lives while promoting peace in the preceding year. This year, the United Nations honoured medals at a solemn posthumous ceremony to five Pakistani peacekeepers who lost their lives while serving in peacekeeping operations during 2016. The five Pakistanis peacekeepers who were honoured are: Havildar Abdul Majeed Khan and Havildar Zishan Ahmed, who served with the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO ); Lt-Colonel Muhammad Ashraf, who served with the United Nations Operation in Ivory Coast (UNOCI); Naik Qaiser Abbas, who was deployed with the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA); and Ms. Shabnam Khan who served in a civilian capacity with the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA). Pakistan’s Acting Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Nabeel Munir, received the awards on behalf of the families of fallen peacekeepers. Pakistan is the 3rd largest contributor of military and police personnel to UN peacekeeping. It currently deploys

more than 7,100 uniformed personnel to the UN peace operations in the Central African Republic, Cote d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Liberia, South Sudan, Sudan and the Western Sahara. The UN Secretary-General, who launched a moment of silence to remember the fallen peacekeepers, expressed his deepest condolences and appreciation to the families and friends of those who died, as well as his deepest sorrow and greatest appreciation to the countries that contributed the troops and police officers.


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UN Cinema celebrates the role of female peacekeepers

UN Cinema is a new collaboration between the UN Information Centre and PNCA to feature films and documentaries focused on development, humanitarian issues, and human rights from across the world. To mark International Day of UN Peacekeepers on 29 May, UN Cinema launched at the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA), Islamabad, with its first screening of ‘A Journey of a Thousand Miles: Peacekeepers,’ a documentary on the role of women in international peacekeeping. Directed and produced by Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy and Geeta Gandbir the documentary follows a unit of 160 Bangladeshi women who, between June 2013 and July 2014, travel far from their friends and families to join the United Nations Stabilizing Mission in Haiti. They form one of the world’s first all-female, predominantly Muslim peacekeeping units; shattering every stereotype the world holds about the capabilities of Muslim women. In his opening remarks, Per Lodin, Head of Mission and Chief Military Observer Major General, UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan’s (UNMOGIP’s) highlighted the

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importance of female peacekeepers and the evolving nature of UN peacekeeping operations around the world. He mentioned that in all fields of peacekeeping, women have proven that they can perform the same roles, to the same standards and under the same difficult conditions, as their male counterparts. UNMOGIP is the second oldest UN peacekeeping mission that monitors the ceasefire between India and Pa-

kistan along the Line of Control and Working Boundary in Jammu and Kashmir. Vittorio Cammarota, Director UN Information Centre suggested this new partnership is instrumental for increasing the number of Pakistani people that information can be shared with on what the United Nations System is working on in Pakistan and abroad.


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Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy Muslim women who decided to use their abilities, becoming peacekeepers and enabling Bangladesh to bring peace to the world.

Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy The Oscar double winner, Filmmaker and Producer

What was your motivation for making “A Journey of a Thousand Miles: Peacekeepers”? I learnt that Bangladesh, a predominantly Muslim country had become the first women peacekeeping Muslim country. These women are represented in the United Nations and would be deployed to Haiti and Liberia. I was very pleased to see how these women were organizing themselves. I was wondering, what the impact on their families would be, coming from such traditional and conservative villages and towns. Or what impact their leaving would have on society and how they could inspire other young women to do so. So “A Journey of Thousand Miles” is about

What are some of the challenges that you saw female peacekeepers facing in the field? Some challenges had to do with the fact that they were literally sent across the world, for example from Pakistan to Haiti, many of them had never travelled by plane and had never been away from their children, husbands, parents, for such extended periods of time. Once there, they had no holidays, unless they paid for their way back. Being away for more than twelve months obviously not only took its toll on them, but also on their children, their families where husbands who had never been care givers now had to take on this responsibility, and the impact this would have on the husband-wife relationship. One of the women, Farida, had a very difficult time because her husband just couldn’t accept the fact that his wife was away for a year, saying this was a selfish decision, but for others families were more supportive, so it was a mixed experience for many of the women.

ing when they go out on patrol, we saw that the women in Haiti responded well to the Bangladeshi peacekeepers. They would come forward, tell them their problems, bring them home, and introduce them to their families. You don’t see that frequently happening with male peacekeepers. In addition, there have been many scandals for male peacekeepers regarding theft, of sexual abuse.

What inspired you most during the filming of this documentary? What inspired me most was how the Bangladeshi men reacted to their wives’ decisions, how they cooked and cleaned, and took care of their children, how the husband- wife dynamics changed. When the women came back the husbands told them they realized the sacrifices they had to go through as working women and mothers. They understood, almost like they had seen the light. That in itself is inspiring to me.

Why do you think having more women in peacekeeping missions is important? I think it’s very important for more women to go into peacekeeping missions. Women are non-threaten-


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Communicating for peacekeeping United Nations peacekeeping involves a partnership between the United Nations, its member states but also civilians in need of protection. Today, more than 113,000 Blue Helmets in 16 peacekeeping operations, on four continents are making the United Nations proud by maintaining peace and security, facilitating political processes, protecting civilians, assisting in disarmament, supporting elections, protecting and promoting human rights, and assisting in restoring the rule of law all over the world. Peacekeeping would not be possible without the determined commitment of UN peacekeepers, who serve in the most difficult environments, some making the ultimate sacrifice in order to safeguard the population and maintain peace for others. Public Information and strategic communication have proved to be effective tools to mobilize support and encourage specific behaviors and actions in the peacekeeping process. The Public Information offices of most largescale UN peacekeeping operations its peace-making, peacekeeping, as well as the peace-building efforts through both traditional and innovative communication channels like, UN and public radio and TV channels, and print and social media. When compared with other media, the advantage of radio is that it reaches the largest number of people, especially in

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remote, war-torn and conflict areas , because it is less dependent on infrastructural development or the technological sophistication and wealth of the listener, and reaches illiterate people. Many peacekeeping missions have established their own ‘UN Radio’ stations with broadcast capabilities and their own frequencies. Through UN radios, the UN system has a way of transmitting messages and stimulating national debate on key transitions and post conflict related issues. The advantage of such stations is that they provide a peacekeeping mission with the ability to put out its message 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Peace and Security Section of the UN Department of Public Information (UNDPI) also plays a prime role in providing strategic communications support to the public information components of UN peacekeeping and special political missions. The United Nations Information Centre actively participates and promotes the messages of the UN peacekeeping through organizing events including seminars with youth, radio programmes, social media, publishing specific features in the UN magazines to raise public awareness towards the value of peace, and to generate support from local audiences, diplomatic missions and from the government. It also provides communication to the Islamabad headquarter of the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan to help developing and disseminating the messages and stories of the peacekeeping through electronic and

print channels and print publications, including the annual magazine, ‘Observer’ of the mission. Panel display of the historic photos of the services of the UN peacekeepers in the gallery of the UN Information Centre reminds us and the walking visitors the value of the UN peacekeeping. The current issue of the UN Pakistan magazine is part of our continued communication support to the substantive goal of the organization. We pay tribute and deepest gratitude to the United Nations peacekeepers through publicizing and highlighting their stories in this issue of the United Nations Magazine. We hope that through these stories, messages of peacebuilding and peacekeeping will be reaching out to the hearts and minds of the people of Pakistan and to the readers outside Pakistan. Vittorio Cammarota Director, United Nations Information Centre

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An overview of the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan The Jammu and Kashmir region has been a source of heightened tensions between India and Pakistan for nearly seven decades. The UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) monitors the ceasefire between India and Pakistan along the Line of Control and Working Boundary in Jammu and Kashmir. In 1947, the Indian subcontinent was

and to recommend various measures including the use of observers to stop the fighting. At the recommendation of UNCIP, the Secretary-General appointed the Military Adviser to support the Commission on military aspects and provided for a group of military observers to assist him. In January 1949, the first team of unarmed Military Observers arrived in the area to supervise a ceasefire between India and Pakistan and to assist the Military Adviser to United Nations Commission for India and Pa-

changed hands. The Security Council on December 21 adopted resolution 307, by which it demanded that a durable ceasefire in all areas of conflict remain in effect until all armed forces had withdrawn to their respective territories and to positions which fully respected the ceasefire line in Jammu and Kashmir supervised by UNMOGIP. In July 1972, India and Pakistan signed an agreement defining a Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir, which followed the same course as the ceasefire line

granted full self-governance from former British rule and partitioned into two independent states: India and Pakistan. Under the Indian Independence Act of 1947, the state of Jammu and Kashmir was free to accede to either country. Its accession became a matter of dispute between the two countries and fighting broke out later that year. A year later, the UN Security Council adopted resolution 39 establishing a United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan (UNCIP) to investigate and mediate the dispute in Kashmir. In April, by its resolution 47 the Council decided to enlarge the membership of UNCIP

kistan . On 27 July, the Karachi agreement established a ceasefire line to be supervised by UN Military Observers. In 1951, United Nations Commission for India and Pakistan was replaced by UNMOGIP under Security Council Resolution 91. UNMOGIP’s functions were to observe and report, investigate complaints of ceasefire violations and submit its finding to each party and to the Secretary-General. Hostilities broke out again between India and Pakistan at in 1971. When a ceasefire came into effect on December 17, a number of positions on both sides of the 1949 ceasefire line had

established by the Karachi Agreement in 1949. India took the unilateral position that the mandate of UNMOGIP had lapsed. At present, given the disagreement between the two parties over UNMOGIP’s mandate and functions, the Secretary-General’s position has been that UNMOGIP could be terminated only by a decision of the Security Council. In the absence of such an agreement, UNMOGIP has been maintained with the same arrangements as established following the December 1971 ceasefire.


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An overview of Pakistan’s contributions to UN Peacekeeping UN Peacekeeping missions depict a long and valued history of Pakistan’s association with the United Nations. Pakistan joined the UN in 1947, immediately after attaining independence, while participation in UN peacekeeping operations started in 1960 with deployment in Congo. Since then, a large number of soldiers, civilians, police and paramedical forces are regularly participating in numerous missions and have conducted a host of activities under the banner of the UN, ranging from humanitarian assistance to delicate security operations. Currently (as of 31 May 2017) a total number of 7,135 contingent troops, experts on mission and staff officers from Pakistan are serving on seven UN Peacekeeping missions, including the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO); the Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA); the United Nations Stabilization Mission In Haiti (MINUSTAH); the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO); the United Nations Mission In Liberia (UNMIL); and the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). Participation in peacekeeping missions includes serious challenges ranging

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Pakistan 280 POLICE


6,769 TROOPS

7,123 TOTAL

from violent encounters to loss of lives. Pakistan’s valiant armed forces and contingents have sacrificed many lives while serving the oppressed populations on these missions. Their overwhelming participation and sacrifices show an unruffled resolve to save humanity even at the cost of their own lives, facing serious injuries, or life-long disabilities. The maximum number of casualties on a single day occurred during Operation United Shield, in the UN Mission in Somalia on 5 June 1993, where 24 Pakistani soldiers sacrificed their lives while ensuring safety for the people of So-

malia. Because of this, 5 June is now observed every year in Pakistan as the ‘Pakistani Peacekeepers Day’. The contributions of Pakistan in UN peacekeeping missions have been widely recognised by the United Nations. Pakistan is honoured to have been appointed on various key roles of UN Peacekeeping operations. It includes Special Envoy, Adviser to UN Secretary General, Special Representative of the UN Secretary General, Military Adviser at DPKO, Chief Military observer, Force and Deputy Force Commanders.

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Pakistan’s Formed Police Unit for stability in Haiti The Pakistan Formed Police Unit (FPU) has been performing peacekeeping and stability duties in Haiti since 2004. The contingent comprises components from various setups of Civil Armed Forces. They are responsible for a variety of activities. The Formed Police Unit conducts visibility patrolling following a UN resolution passed on 13 April to draw down the United Nations Stabilization Mission In Haiti (MINUSTAH) military, which has worsened the law and order situation. Patrolling ensures security among the population and is being carried out in high terrains and remote areas of Haiti. On 29 May, the UN Day of Peacekeepers was celebrated worldwide. The factions participated in multiple activities to address problems among the Haitian population, and albeit limited resources managed to organize a Free Medical Camp in Cabarate. Those who were unable to access basic health facilities were able to do so. More than 150 patients were treated thanks to this initiative. Another focus area is to maintain a high environmental standard, one of the fundamental principles of the United Nations. Efforts towards this issue were evaluated by a composite team of United Nations officials (Environmental Unit). The Pakistan Formed Police Unit (13th Rotation) was awarded a certificate of environmental

commitment on World Environmental Day on 5 June, and was acclaimed the best Formed Police Unit for their usage of the water quota. Among the natural disasters impacting Central America, Hurricane Matthew badly affected the Southern portion of Haiti. The disaster left many people homeless, facing health, psychological and economic issues, and the death toll was approximately 1000. The Pakistan Formed Police Unit was employed on relief duties, rehabilitating those who were affected. Haiti’s presidential election was held in Oct 2016. Haiti was converted from un-constitutional to constitutional during this event. The Pakistan Formed Police Unit made sure a smooth and peaceful election process was completed successfully. On successful conclusion of one-year

bonafide duty in the United Nations, a Peacekeepers medal is awarded to the units. A medal parade ceremony was carried out on 23 March 2017 dignitaries of United Nations were invited. This was carried out with great enthusiasm, with aspects of Pakistani culture displayed by various culture-oriented performances. Various other activities are also carried out by the Formed Police Unit , including physical efficiency training, situation-based evasive ability development training on a daily basis, re-addressal of the issues by the commander on a monthly basis, provision of security to UNPOL, and various inspections by United Nations team and official periodical interaction with international Police Officers (IPOs).


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Pakistani peacekeepers host medical camps in East Darfur In December last, Pakistani peacekeepers of the African Union/UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) reached out to internally displaced persons, refugees from South Sudan and prison inmates through free medical camps in El Daein, East Darfur. More than 1,255 cases were treated at both the Khor Omer camp and the El Daein Central Prison, where access to health services was very limited said Captain Ameer Aslam of the Mission’s Clinic At the Khor Omer camp, hundreds of IDPs and refugees were treated for different ailments including skin diseases, body aches, diarrhoea, coughs, chest pains and malaria. Abdalla Hamad, representative, Popular Committee, Khor Omer camp, who complained of severe chest pain, thanked African Union/ UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur for organizing the free medical camp and urged the Mission to continue with this kind of service. He said he was already relieved after the first dose of the medicine given to him by the African Union/UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur doctors. Amna Hamoda, 34, claimed she had been suffering from an eye condition for the past few years, and despite seeing various doctors did

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not receive relief. She saw the arrival of the African Union/UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur doctors as a move in the right direction, and was positive her eye condition would im-

prove rapidly. A similar free medical camp was also held at the El Daein Central Prison by doctors from the Mission’s hospital in Nyala, South Dar-

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fur, and El Daein. Captain Aslam noted that the Mission’s clinic in El Daein is open to the community and receives between 5 - 10 patients every day. Abda Musa, women’s representative, Khor Omer camp stated her belief that such medical initiative, if repeated in other locations, will assist the displaced in the future. She was particularly happy with the result in the Khor Omer Camp, where most could not afford to purchase medicines previous to the arrival of the mission. The Mission’s peacekeepers plan to host more such medical camps benefiting the local communities across Darfur.


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Pakistani contingent inaugurates water station in West Darfur

In last summer, Engineering Section of the African Union/UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) and the Pakistani contingent inaugurated a water station at Ardamata area, West Darfur. The project which consisted of three boreholes and six water storage facilities will provide potable water to the Mission, local community and internally displaced persons in the area. In addition, the Pakistani Peacekeepers constructed a fence for the boreholes and the water storage facilities as well as paved the road to the water station. Mohammad Islam, sector west, Mission Support Officer of the African

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Union/UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur stated that it will continue to share the available water resources with the local communities to help alleviate their suffering. He said the project will not only help rationalize the Mission’s spending on buying water from outsources, but will also give the peacekeeping operation the opportunity to assist the local community. Mohamed Ismael, Sheikh at the Ardamata Camp for internally displaced persons (IDPs), emphasized that the newly drilled boreholes will ease the suffering of the population in the camp. He mentioned that previously, the population had been suffering to

obtain clean water, using water-hand pumps, which went out of order recently. During the inauguration, personnel of the operation and the ‘Sheiks’ of Internally Displaced Persons planted trees to contribute to creating a green and healthy atmosphere in the area, on the occasion of World Environment Day. During the implementation of the project the Pakistani contingent organized a makeshift clinic and provided open medical days to the local community.

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Pakistani peacekeepers support engineering project in Ardamata, West Darfur Oumar Kane, Head of Office, Sector West of the African Union/UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID), recently inspected work being undertaken by the Mission in support of the state government to prevent soil erosion and damage from flash floods along Kaja River, Ardamata Valley, in El Geneina, West Darfur. Mr. Kane noted that annual rainfall often causes flash floods in the area, leading to severe damage to the main road at Ardamata and disrupting movement to the El Geneina airport. Additionally, the road is also frequently used by displaced persons living in the nearby Ardamata camp. He said that mission is supporting this project given the critical importance of Ardamata road and its proximity to a large camp of the Internally Displace Persons in West Darfur. By doing so, both the people and a major asset are being protected, adding that he hopes this project will ensure continued access and assistance to displaced people during the rainy season.

the Ministry of Planning, West Darfur. It entails the construction of a 1 kilometre diversion channel to divert the course of the water from the river bank, thus preventing soil erosion, as well as building a 1.3 kilometre gabion wall to strengthen the embankment.

The project, which began on 25 April and is expected to be completed in one month, was implemented following a request from

Support by the mission towards the project, which is being provided by Pakistani peacekeepers, at an estimated cost of US $74,200, includes

the expertise of seven engineers and the use of the Mission’s plant machinery. The Ministry of Planning is collaborating with the mission and has also designed the project. Additionally, they are supporting the Mission’s efforts by providing engineers and machinery. Upon the conclusion of his inspection, Mr. Kane expressed satisfaction with the progress made on the project and commended all involved for the excellent quality of work on the project.


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Pakistan donates Asphalt plant to the government of Liberia The Government of Pakistan, through the Pakistan Repair and Maintenance contingent (PakRAM) contingent of the United Nations Mission In Liberia (UNMIL), donated an asphalt plant to the Government of Liberia at a ceremony at Camp Scheffline, on the outskirts of Monrovia. The facility was received by Liberia’s Deputy Minister of Defence, Saint Jerome Larbelee, from the Commanding Officer, Lt.-Col. Mohammad Rafiq of the Pakistan Repair and Maintenance contingent. Lt.Col Rafiq said that the ceremony marked the beginning of a new era of Pakistani-Liberia brotherly relations, as he formally handed over the plant. Pakistan Repair and Maintenance contingent to be leaving Liberia as part of mission’s drawdown. The Government of Liberia is currently implementing a transition plan that will see national institutions assuming full responsibility for security across the country by 30 June 2016. Deputy Force Commander and Acting Force Commander of the mission , Brig.-Gen. Dirk Faust said that a lot needs to be done to achieve full security transition to the government but that the hand-over demonstrated mission’s commitment to support

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the transition fully. The Niggatta Mobile Asphalt NP600 Plant facilitated the construction and rehabilitation of several roads at key installations across Liberia, such as the Samuel K. Doe Stadium, James Spriggs Payne Airfield, Star Base, and Roberts International Airport (RIA). More than 12,000 tonnes of asphalt has been produced since the installation of the plant in 2007, covering an area of over 81,000 square metres. Six soldiers from the Armed Forces of Liberia have been trained by the Pakistan Repair and Maintenance contingent on the basic operations of the plant. The donation also included spare parts and other accessories to meet urgent maintenance requirements. Deputy Minister, Larbelee promised

that the government will ensure the plant’s proper use and safety. The Pakistan Repair and Maintenance contingent arrived in the mission in 2003 and has implemented various projects, including the repair of 60 kilometers of RIA-Monrovia road, 75 kilometres of Harper-Webo road, and maintenance of the runway at RIA. Also present during the hand-over ceremony were Pakistan Contingent Commander, Lt.-Col. Tufail Ahmed, Director of Mission Support, Hubert Price, and Assistant Minister for Technical Services, Ministry of Public Works, Daniel Socree.

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Pakistani female peacekeepers outshined in the United Nations Mission in Liberia Pakistan started contributing female peacekeepers to the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) in 2006. Since then, over 70 staff officers, female doctors and nursing officers have contributed to the cause of peace in Liberia. As staff officer, Major Nagina from Legal Branch of Pakistan Army rendered her services as Force Legal advisor in the mission’s force Headquarter in 2015/16. Her services were commended by the force leadership, where she not only provided legal advice to various force elements, but also helped Armed Forces of Liberia in formulating their legal procedures. She also actively participated in various activities and seminars arranged in the mission’s Headquarters. Since the start of the mission in 2003, the Pakistan Army contributed a level – II field hospital to the United Nations Mission in Liberia . In 2006, female doctors and nursing officers also joined other ranks in the mission. The doctors mainly consisted of Gynecologists and General Duty Physicians, while nursing officers contributed in all departments of the hospital. The female officers of Pakistan Medical Setup Battalion (PAKMED)

hospital continued to provide high quality medical care during the Ebola crisis, that shook the foundations of West African Nations. The female officers remained committed to their oath as professional medical practitioners under those testing times, and performed their duties under extreme stress and danger to their lives, hand in hand with other international partners. The female officers took a leading role during numerous free medical camps organized by PAKMED throughout various counties of Liberia and provided high quality medical facilities to the locals. Their contributions were also applauded by the International staff of the mission for their professionalism and dedication to duty. Currently, Medical Setup Battalion Level – II plus hospital remains preferred medical care entity for UN staff and civilians of Liberia. The female officers remain an active part

of the contingent, fully participating in all extracurricular activities and mission level functions.


real lives: stories that inspire us

Kangaroo mother care helping preterm babies survive Komal Fahad’s second child was born premature. The doctors at the Services Institute of Medical Sciences (SIMS) Lahore, a teaching hospital, told her that her baby had a critically low birthweight of only 1.6 kg. Komal did not know what to do next. After the usual weight loss that a baby goes through in the first week of life, the weight of her baby would drop to 1.3kg. He would surely have to spend weeks in an incubator – that is, if there were a vacant one. Pakistan is ranked fourth among ten countries globally with the highest number of preterm births. More than 100,000 babies born premature in the country die because of preterm complications. Dr. Naureen Rasul, an assistant professor at the Gynecology and Obstetrics Unit-II of the institute, informed Komal of another option. They could be admitted into the newly established Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC) Ward until Afaq showed signs of consistent weight gain. The UNICEF-supported Kangaroo mother care ward at the Institute of Medical Sciences was established in August 2016, as an alternative approach for premature newborns. Babies with a birthweight of 1.5kg or higher, but not having the base weight

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of 2.5kg, are admitted to the ward until they are strong enough to be breastfed. Every mother is given a special kit from the Institute of Medical Sciences , containing a hand-held mirror to evaluate the condition of their babies; a small measuring cup; a thermometer; a hand sanitizer; a sterile gown for the mother; and clothes for the baby. Prof. Dr. Rubina Sohail, head of the Gynecology and Obstetrics Department at SIMS suggests that in the not-too-distant future, basic health centers can also be equipped with Kangaroo Mother Care at a small cost, although it is no replacement for intensive care where required. In just seven months from its launch, the facility has treated 155 preterm babies, with no reports of complications, thanks to UNICEF’s support.

The ward also has a follow-up mechanism, where contact is kept with mothers after discharge. According to Dr. Rasul, the babies are receiving the healthy start to life they deserve. UNICEF Health Specialist, Dr. Tahir Manzoor says that the facility is gaining pace in the country and various public health institutes are requesting support for establishing their own wards. In a country like Pakistan with exceptionally high number of premature births, Kangaroo Mother Care can prove to be an effective and efficient way to treat and increase the chances of survival for preterm babies.

real lives: stories that inspire us

Progressing towards peace and development

The Virtual Platform for Peace and Development (VPPD) is a UNDP initiative to institutionalize informed decision making on peace and development in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. By hosting open source information on factors pertaining to the issues in the province, the platform allows users to explore complex inter-relationships between different variables, presented visually in the form of graphs and tables. The Platform is based at the Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies (IPCS) at the University of Peshawar and aims to transform the department into a dynamic hub of academics and researchers who can play pivotal roles in informing government policies on peacebuilding in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. An important component of the VPPD initiative dealt with building the capacities of students in terms of data screening, collation, and analysis from secondary sources. The purpose was

to create a cohort of trained students who can start successful careers in the development sector as government employees or civil society representatives. Ms. Maimoona Akhtar, a student of Journalism and Mass Communications from the University of Peshawar was apprehensive about choosing print or electronic media as a career because her family considered it an ‘inappropriate’ field for a young woman. This severely limited her professional choices. After graduating, Maimoona was selected as an intern with the UNDP. She was required to identify cases of violence and conflict in selected districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, compile them through relevant software for data analysis, and share the final results with the team of the Virtual Platform for Peace and Development. The tasks complemented Maimoo-

na’s degree as she was required to go through dozens of local newspapers on a daily basis. Learning data entry and analysis was a useful skill, required skill by most development sector jobs. After completing her internship, Maimoona successfully applied for the post of a Programme Assistant in ‘Aware Girls’ a local organization that deals with women’s empowerment in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Her experience with project has proven invaluable in her present employment. Ms. Kiran Fida, her supervisor in Aware Girls said she is now a well-trained professional with the required skills and knowledge to excel in her career. Maimoona is pleased to have started her career and thankful to UNDP for giving her the opportunity to adopt a career of her choice and be able to support her family.


real lives: stories that inspire us

Passion for change Amna Ijaz, one out of the 36 cohorts of the United Nations Volunteers in Pakistan explains that many people are unaware of their rights as citizens, especially women. She has a crucial task: educating young Pakistanis on their rights and duties as citizens of a democratic society. The challenges have only increased her determination. She says people don’t know the importance of their vote, and some of them don’t even cast votes, highlighting how important it is should be made aware of their voting rights,” she says. Amna was born in Lahore, Pakistan and currently completing a postgraduate MPhil degree in Education in Lahore She also has also taught for several years. When she heard about the UN Volunteers programme, she immediately applied, thinking it was the perfect opportunity for her to do something for the betterment of society. Providing voter education proved to be an eye-opening experience, for both Amna and her students. She recalls a time when she conducted a session for postgraduate students who were eligible to vote for the first time. They were intrigued and excited about the voting process and how they could effectively par-

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ticipate in the democratic process. The discussion let her know that the youth were passionate and had a strong will to better the welfare of the country. Interacting with diverse people as a volunteer was an important learning experience for Amna, providing her with valuable skills for the future. She says she has learned how to

engage with people from different societies and backgrounds, how to make audiences interested in a subject while delivering her sessions, how to think critically and influence other peoples’ thinking. Amna’s experience has convinced her that volunteering is important to a country such as Pakistan and she believes more young people should, because the youth has the ability to bring about a change in society.

real lives: stories that inspire us

Building responsible citizenship

42 young people file into a classroom at the University of Management and Technology in Lahore, Pakistan. The two young women standing before them are only a few years older than they are but the group listens to them respectfully and with increasing interest. As the young women conclude their presentation, a multitude of questions is asked. Ayesha Khalid, 27, from Lahore, is one of those conducting the civic education session on “Roles and responsibilities of citizens in light of the constitution of Pakistan, 1973�. Along with her colleague Amna Ijaz, she describes the constitutional rights and freedoms of every Pakistani citizen, including the right to education, freedom of worship, and the right to vote. The two emphasize the importance of voting. Ayesha and Amna are United Nations Volunteers, who are engaging young people to volunteer their time, passion and innovative ideas to strengthen their communities. After completing a degree in political science, Ayesha began considering how to apply her knowledge and passion to benefit society. She believes that after her studies, this is the

perfect occasion to apply what she learnt in a practical way. Becoming a UN Volunteer has given her unique insight into some of Pakistan’s traditionally marginalized communities, such as transgender individuals. Her civic education lesson with one such group was the first time she had ever interacted with them. Ayesha learned that though transgendered Pakistanis were talented and dynamic individuals, many were held back by the lack of employment opportunities for members of their community. This experience led to a new commitment for Ayesha, who aims to work for this segment of society. Through avenues to meaningful employment she hopes to help integrate them into the mainstream of society.

Her experience has shown that there is a great deal of work to be done to increase civic engagement across society. As the session comes to an end, the students are energized by what they have learned. Hira Iqbal, a student of computer science says, they have learned about their rights and responsibilities, which they were previously unaware of.


real lives: stories that inspire us

Young volunteers spark civic engagement Before Anita Ilyas, a United Nations Volunteer in Lahore began conducting a quiz, she expected only a few of the participating students would be motivated to read through readings on civic engagement that she and her fellow volunteer had provided. She was in for a surprise. When the questions were posed, every student gave correct answers- the future generation was well informed on the systems of their country. As one of 36 United Nations Volunteers in Pakistan, Anita provides civic education to youth and people from marginalized communities in Lahore. Born in Islamabad to parents who only held higher secondary school certificates, Anita is aware of the opportunities for education she has been given and wants to pass these on to others. After matriculating, Anita won a gold medal for Islamic knowledge. She is now preparing for two bachelor’s degrees: one in education and one in library science. When the opportunity to apply to become a UN Volunteer arose, she seized it immediately, thinking it would provide her with great exposure and enhance her profile. In this capacity, Anita runs a session on Active Citizen Engagement

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at the University of Education, where she is also pursuing one of her degrees. With help from classmates, she sets up an activity for 110 students, and delivers a presentation on the rights and responsibilities of a citizen, including voting. This is followed by a series of role-playing exercises to highlight the importance of informed voting for both women and men. Finally, she takes questions. Anita and her colleagues in the UN Volunteers have conducted a series of similar sessions attended by thousands of women, men and young people, from every walk of life. By providing civic education and encouraging all citizens to cast their vote in the next election, these young people are helping build a more engaged society. Anita herself sees volunteering to be a crucial means of engagement for young

people. From a personal perspective, it has given her important skills such as time management that will serve her in her professional life. She believes the youth are an asset for every society and can make a difference.

real lives: stories that inspire us

Expanding horizons through volunteering

It was always Tahir Liaqat’s dream to be a social worker and to serve humanity. The son of a manual labourer and the youngest of five children, he had the opportunity to gain an education and is now completing a master’s degree in education management in his hometown of Lahore. When the opportunity to become a UN Volunteer and provide civic and voter education to youth and marginalized communities, especially women, came up, Tahir seized it. As one of 36 UN Volunteers in Pakistan, he has found that his horizons and passions have expanded more than he could have envisaged. He proudly counts off the valuable skills he has gained through volunteering: encouraging people, convincing them to perform tasks, working in groups, and working with people with different values and cultures. As a UN Volunteer, Tahir gives presentations and leads role playing activities on informed voting. As part of his training he has travelled to Islamabad and presented to people from all across the country.

He is a firm believer in the value of educating citizens about how Pakistan’s system of governance works and the important role they play within it as voters. He believes that if every person in the country casts their vote, a good democratic government can come into power, and that if people are informed about their civic rights and responsibilities they can stand against wrong decisions.

that their vote can change in their living standards but in reality, their one vote can bring a big change in this country.”

“In our country the general public has a very limited idea of governance,” Tahir says. “They always say that we can do nothing for this country. But they have to think that they can do anything if they have the willpower. They do not think


real lives: stories that inspire us

Building civic engagement in marginalized communities

Uzaira Tasneem’s first name means “helpful”, and the 22-year-old United Nations Volunteer has made its significance into her mission. Uzaira is currently completing her bachelor’s degree from the University of Education, Lahore. True to her name, when she heard about the UN Volunteers programme, she decided to apply, thinking it could approach her more to community and the people. As one of 36 UN Volunteers, Uzaira conducts regular civic education sessions for young people and marginalized communities around Lahore. Through presentations, role playing and question and answers, she teaches her audience about how the branches of government work, and tells them how and why to become informed voters. She explains that civic education is important because it teaches individuals what they can do to protect and support democracy and the nation. The village of ‘Sham ki Bhattian’ lies on the outskirts of Lahore, Pakistan’s second largest city, yet education levels are low, and women are prevented from participating in public

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life. Only few cast their vote. In this challenging environment, Uzaira is proud to have made a contribution to increasing civic engagement. At her first session, only three women attended, as few were allowed to leave their homes. Since then, this number has increased to 13. She has met people who did not even know how to write their names, incluing women who had never been

to school in their lives. She describes her pleasure at helping them empower themselves through voting. “It is important to give them awareness that voting is their right as well as their voice, so they must not waste their vote,” she says. She believes through the scheme she is changing something in the world and in the lives of others.

real lives: stories that inspire us

A young adult rejects violence

“I saw a six-year-old boy get shot by accident during a gang fight on a street in Lyari”, says Haris Usman Ghani, narrating his heartbreaking experience. Coming from Lyari, one of Karachi’s most violent areas, he was almost in tears when he shared his story. Threats, violence and frequent strikes in his neighborhood forced his family to shut down their small boutique. This resulted in an unending deficit and overdue loans. “I wanted to pick up a weapon and retaliate when I saw the innocent boy being killed. But I was helpless.” said Haris. He confessed that he knew of neighborhood boys who had given up on finding decent work and had joined gangs, what else could be expected of them growing up in such a neighborhood? Haris struggled to find work for two years; employers would turn him down upon learning where he lived. His last option would have been what other boys were doing, joining gangs. But he then found out about the Youth Employment Project. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Pakistan is implementing the project supported by the United States Agency for In-

ternational Development (USAID). It lasts three years (2015–2017) working with at-risk youth and providing them with garment-related skills development and employment opportunities in Lyari, Sultanabad, and Korangi. Haris received training for stitching operators at the Pakistan Hosiery Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PHMA). He now works at a garment factory and is supporting his family. “You lose track if you cannot find a

job because sharing your grievances with anyone is hard. This training helped me find new friends and motivated me to become ambitious. Where I come from has nothing to do with what I can achieve”, Haris says. USAID has empowered 4,000 young women and men, helping them acquire skills in garment manufacturing. More than 1,000 are now employed.


real lives: stories that inspire us

Improving Mehri’s life through skill development trainings in Chitral

57-year-old Mehri Nissa is a mother of four, living in the village Charvillandeh in District Chitral with a jobless husband. After losing her home to the 2015 earthquake in Chitral and bearing miserable financial conditions, the self-reliant Mehri decided take control of her circumstances and sought employment as a maid in a few neighbouring houses. Mehri was encouraged by local community members to participate in trainings arranged by the World Food Programme (WFP) Pakistan with the support of the United Kingdom (DFID), on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), micro-entrepreneurship, and kitchen gardening. At first she was hesitant, however the financial incentive convinced her to participate in the training sessions. She impressed her trainers with her commitment and enthusiasm. Mehri learned about natural disasters/hazards, their implications and the evacuation procedures to be followed in her locality. She learned and practiced kitchen gardening on her barren piece of land, which now gives her some income from selling some fresh vegetables to the nearby houses.

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A training on micro entrepreneurship enabled Mehri to open a little tuck shop outside her home which is run by her son, Mustafa, after school. He earns an average sale of PKR 1,120 per day, with a daily profit of up to PKR 480/. This development helps Mustafa to pay his school fees. Mehri has set a great example of hope for the vulnerable poor women in Chitral. She voluntarily teaches them what she learned from the WFP training sessions in her own capacity. After the training, Mehri happily received a cash entitlement of PKR 6,750. She thanked WFP for helping her pave her life towards normalcy.

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agriculture and food security

Developing the food value chain in two provinces of Pakistan

The country office of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in Pakistan concluded a needs assessment mission to Gilgit Baltistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to explore the potential of agricultural production and help the government to transform agriculture into agro-industry, by closing gaps in value chains. After a series of consultations, the organization developed a proposal for an Agro-Industry Development Program targeting four sectors: fresh fruit, dry stone fruit, trout fish, and dairy. UNIDO elaborated a concept for value addition in close collaboration with the federal Ministry of Food Security and Research and the Provincial Agriculture Departments. The mission assessed selected value chains relevant for the development of processing, packaging, branding, and certification, as well as for establishing linkages with national and international markets. Esam Alqararah, UNIDO Representative in Pakistan stated that UNIDO has contributed US$50,000 as seed money to undertake the needs assessment for the formulation of

the project document. The anticipated budget for the first phase of the project is US$3m, which will be mobilized from the Government of Pakistan and international donors, including UN funds. Alqararah headed the UNIDO mission, comprising of Mr. Bassel Alkhatib, UNIDO Project Manager at UNIDO Head Office in Vienna, and Mr. Youssef Doughan, International Food Expert from Lebanon, who met with local officials, farmers, and women associations from Peshawar and Gilgit Baltistan to identify areas where UNIDO’s assistance is needed to strengthen the selected value chains. The Chief Minister of Gilgit Batistan, Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman commended UNIDO’s efforts to empower deprived communities in the area.

He also thanked the organization for helping the government in establishing a certification system for perishable goods such as cherries and apricots. This will facilitate their exports to China and minimize post-harvest losses.


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agriculture and food security

Canada funds strategic humanitarian response facility in Gilgit, Pakistan

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is constructing a Humanitarian Response Facility (HRF) in Gilgit Baltistan (GB), the northern area of Pakistan, thanks to funding from the Government of Canada. This will be the seventh HRF built in Pakistan as part of a strategic network of storage facilities to help the Government and the humanitarian community to better prepare for and respond to disasters. WFP has been working with the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and the Provincial Disaster Management Authorities (PDMA) to build the facility in strategic locations in the most vulnerable parts of Pakistan. HRFs provide a central storage facility for government relief stocks to be rapidly deployed in emergencies. While WFP designs and builds the HRFs, the Government provides land for construction and takes over operation and maintenance. WFP provides training to government staff in

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technical areas such as warehouse management, facilities management, and firefighting. The Government of Canada is providing CDN$2.2 million (1.7 million USD) for the construction of the Humanitarian Response Facility in Gilgit Baltistan . This comes in addition to just over CDN$4.4 million in contributions for the construction of six other HRFs located in Muzaffargarh, Quetta, Lahore, Hyderabad, Peshawar and Sukkur, jointly with five other donor nations. With an estimated population of 2 million, the province has a hilly terrain with few roads that are often blocked during emergencies by landslides, damage to bridges, or congestion, leaving communities isolated. Instead of having to resort to aerial operations, which are expensive and can only bring a limited

volume of assistance, the facility will provide a central storage hub for critical humanitarian supplies. WFP has already established Emergency Storage Facilities at the district level in the province. The construction of this facility will provide a central storage hub for the movement of critical humanitarian supplies. The Government of Canada is also contributing approximately CDN$1.2 million to address the immediate needs of highly vulnerable families in the drought-affected Tharparkar district of Sindh, through activities such as structural asset creation and trainings on how prepare for and cope during disasters.

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Planting for tomorrow

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) conducted a “Plantation for Tomorrow� activity for the Temporarily Dislocated Persons (TDPs) at WFP Food Hub in District Bannu of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), while they were waiting to receive their monthly WFP Relief food basket. The activity aimed to raise awareness on the importance of plantation and its health and environmental benefits. The participants were excited to learn that tree planting is one of the most sustainable ways to improve air quality. It provides not only shade from the sun and protection from ultra-violet rays but also reduces pollution. Representatives from WFP and its cooperating partner SRSP demonstrated the process of plantation at the Food Hub to the Temporarily Dislocated Persons. People were happy to leave the food hub with their WFP food basket, and additional information on the importance of tree plantation at home as well as at community levels.

The activity contributes towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for achieving the goals for zero hunger, climate action and life on land.


agriculture and food safety

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agriculture and food security

Supporting food security

Good quality seeds are important for enhancing farmers’ productivity and eventually ensuring food security, but emerging technologies have created the need for capacity building of involved professionals and reforms in the seed sector in Pakistan. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) under its project, “Building Capacity of Federal Seed Certification and Registration Department (FSC&RD) to Facilitate Seed and Plant Supply Industry Regulations” will provide support to stakeholders to enhance their technical capacity. FAO has launched the initiative upon the request of Government of Pakistan and aims at: improving coordination and collaboration among key players of seed sector; facilitating inclusive value chain for wheat, rice, cotton and pluses and other crops to achieve increased availability of quality assured seed; supporting the project and other public and private seed sector entities to attain compliance with best international practices; and capacity building for the project to carry out Distinct, Uniformity and Stability (DUS) tests to support effective variety protection under the Plant Breeder Rights (PBRs) Act, 2016.

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At the inception workshop held on May 24, Ms. Minà Dowlatchahi, FAO Representative in Pakistan underscored the presence of concerned professional and institutions from the public and private seed sectors. Dr. Yusaf Zafar, Chairman Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) and Francisco Gamarro, Deputy FAO Representative attended the workshop as the key guests of honour. Around 50 participants including Dr. Dennis Thompson, renowned seed sector expert from the US also attended. The Government of Pakistan has stated its continued support to the project. Representing the Ministry of National Food Security and Research Mr. Imtiaz Ali, Food Security Commissioner appreciated the support provided by FAO under the Technical Cooperation Program (TCP) to the Federal Seed Certification and Registration Department and other seed sector stakeholders in their technical capacity building.

Dr. Yusuf Zafar, Chairman of the Pakistan Agricultural Research Council appreciated that this support from FAO will be catalytic in enhancing capacity of seed sector, and showed to extend its support for the success of this endeavour. Dr. Shakeel Khan, Seed Sector consultant at FAO told participants that training resources; trainers; reference materials; and observational opportunities at stakeholder facilities to enhance those currently available to the project will be ensured.

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agriculture and food safety

Rebuilding lives in Kurram Agency

The unrest in Kurram Agency had caused most of its population to flee the area and take refuge in more peaceful areas of Khyber Pukhtunkhwa. Now, after a period of almost six years, peace has been restored in the region and people have begun to return to their areas. While on one hand this is good news for its inhabitants, at the same time it offers a bigger challenge of rehabilitation. These Temporary Displaced Persons (TDP) who are now returning are welcomed by half or completely destroyed homes, farms that have turned barren filled with thorny shrubs, livestock which has either gone wild or has died, and markets that are almost completely destroyed. Furthermore, these re-

turning TDPs have very limited stocks of food to cater for their needs. In these challenging circumstances, as the return continues, FAO rose to the occasion, and under the funding of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) intervened, offering help to these returning persons. FAO not only offered agriculture inputs, but also rehabilitated vast areas of land, irrigation infrastructure as well as improved the overall livestock holding by restocking as well as running a mass vaccination campaign. Among these interventions, FAO also established Vegetable Production Units on a terrain of one acre each in different villages of Kurram Agency. These Vegetable production units were established to improve the overall food

security in the area as well as to help farmers in income generation through commercial vegetable production. In these units, FAO provided bitter gourd, okra and fresh bean seeds to the farmers with an extended toolkit for efficient vegetable production. Vegetable production units were also established in Kamran Village, Manato, Central Kurram Agency. Kurram Agency has great potential for horticulture development, and if lack of market exposure, basic agriculture skills and absence of value chain concept among farmers can be addressed, the lives of the valley can be filled with hope again.


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agriculture and food security

Developing a sustainable and competitive dairy sector On World Milk Day, FAO highlighted the nutritional benefits of milk for both young and old in the Asia-Pacific region, and the importance of dairy production to the livelihoods of millions of small-holder dairy farmers. Milk is an excellent source of energy, fats, high-quality protein, vitamins and minerals, critical for growth and development in children. Additional health benefits of milk include stronger immune systems, prevention of illnesses such as hypertension, dental decay, and respiratory problems. FAO has long promoted the consumption of one glass of milk per day for every child - a message echoed nationally by many governments in the region. But milk can also help prevent bone loss and fractures among the aged. Vinod Ahuja, a FAO Policy Officer from Bangkok said that there is evidence that introducing regular consumption of milk to the elderly in this region can be beneficial for those who have habitually low calcium intake which can lead to bone loss. Therefore, milk has a place at the table of emerging economies. FAO’s Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative Kundhavi Kadiresan stated that beyond the obvious health benefits dairy can also

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contribute to a nation’s prosperity. Milk and dairy products are sourced primarily from small-holder family farms in this region. The sale of milk by these families to local markets provides a stable daily cash income, particularly to landless farming families, and the animals are valuable to them because farmers can sell them in time of need to generate cash and use animals as collateral for loans. Dairy also creates jobs outside the farm gate. Processing and distribution activities, from pasteurization to yogurt manufacturing, not only add value to raw milk but also create jobs. Evidence from Bangladesh, Kenya and Ghana, for example, suggests that for every 100 litres of milk traded as many as five full time jobs can be created. Indeed three of the world’s top pro-

ducing countries are in Asia. India is the world’s largest producer, followed by China and Pakistan in this region, largely for domestic consumption, while Australia and New Zealand produce a surplus. But while dairy has this big potential, FAO is warning that the sector needs to be more sustainable and competitive in Asia and the Pacific. This means helping smallholder farmers gain greater access to markets and services and develop successful dairy business models to increase domestic production. FAO remains committed to working with all stakeholders to achieve a dairy sector that contributes to health and prosperity of the world.

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agriculture and food safety

The USA contribute to improving lives of vulnerable Pakistanis

The most vulnerable people in Pakistan will continue to receive assistance from the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) thanks to a contribution of US$25 million from the United States government. The donation was announced by the “Food for Peace” Office of the US Agency for International Development (USAID), and will allow WFP to carry on with programmes providing food, cash and education for families in the poorest parts of Pakistan, as well as working to improve the nutrition of women and children throughout the country. Although Pakistan has made significant gains in recent years in food production, 60 percent of the 189 million people in the country do not eat nutritious meals regularly, mainly because the poorest – especially women – can’t afford enough nutritious food. In the north-western part of the country, where the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) share a border with Afghanistan, and where population displacement and natural disasters have taken a heavy toll on people’s capacities to feed their families, WFP uses the USAID

funding to run programmes to help communities adapt to their circumstances. For example, WFP provides cash and food incentives for people to attend classes about hygiene and nutrition, promoting the use of nutritious, seasonal local foods for a more balanced diet. Also in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), money from the US contribution will be used to give fortified wheat flour to people who have had to abandon their homes due to conflict or natural disasters. The government of Pakistan is supporting the WFP programme with 25,000 MT of locally grown wheat for WFP for its humanitarian activities. In addition, the US donation will enable WFP to continue its work to improve the health and nutrition of young children across the country. Good nutrition during a child’s early years is crucial for full physical and mental development, but the lat-

est national nutrition survey found that 15 percent of children under 5 are acutely malnourished, the second highest rate in the region. WFP works with the Government of Pakistan, UNICEF and local organizations on the Community-Based Management of Acute Malnutrition, known as CMAM. This approach enlists community volunteers to identify and start treatment for malnourished children before they become seriously ill. WFP’s role is to provide special nutrient-dense food to children between the ages of two and five who are moderately malnourished, in order to improve their health and prevent them slipping into acute malnutrition. WFP also provides nutrition supplements to malnourished pregnant women and nursing mothers, since nutrition of mothers is crucial for healthy babies and children.


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climate change

Environment Day

Twenty-five years ago, the world came together at the United Nations Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro and agreed that the world’s environment could not be endlessly exploited. It had to be conserved through sustainable development. Around the same time, Pakistan was a world leader in “localizing” the global agenda with the approval of the National Conservation Strategy. Therefore, this World Environment Day, a quarter century later, is a good time to reflect on whether the objectives of the Earth Summit

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were met, and if Pakistan met the objectives it set for itself in the National Conservation Strategy. This question is not an abstract one for Pakistan. If the world does not slow climate change, it will be among the six countries that will be most affected. As glaciers melt in the Himalayas, flooding is projected to substantially increase with the possibility of a repetition of the inundations of 2010 and 2011. Moreover, in the longer term as glaciers recede, the country must cope with the challenges of decreased river flows with the obvious effect on ag-

riculture and urban water supplies, but also the less obvious effect of the depletion of underground aquifers from over use and in some cases from insufficient re-charge. Monsoon rains are likely to fluctuate more as climate change increasingly affects patterns of rainfall, thus provoking alternating floods and droughts. The likely increase in climate-related disasters would take a heavy toll on people, on infrastructure and on the economy. The harsh effects on people from the current extended drought in Sindh’s Tharparkar district shows what could happen in other parts of Pakistan as climate change accelerates. It is not an accident that four of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are related to the environment, for if those issues are not dealt with, it will not be possible for the other goals to be met - whether that means a reduction of poverty, reduced inequality, peaceful and inclusive societies, access to energy, health, education and more. But what can Pakistan do to reduce its vulnerability to climate change? The 1990 National Conservation Strategy laid out a series of actions that would make Pakistan more resilient to the effects of climate change, while conserving what is unique and special in the environment and enabling human devel-

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opment. Action was taken in many areas: vast areas in Gilgit-Baltistan are better protected than they were, renewable energy is used much more and Pakistan has some of the leading expertise in the world on that, there is greater capacity in government, civil society and academia, and there is a whole set of environment related laws that did not exist before. However, the many challenges Pakistan has been facing, whether from a complex regional security environment, or from larger than projected effects of climate change, means that it still has immense work to do in adapting to these changes. Adaptation will require significant investment in alternatives – both alternative energy sources and extensive water conservation and management – as well as in protecting people and infrastructure. As the frequency and duration of major climate change patterns accelerates, this could affect economic growth, particularly in Pakistan’s vitally important agricultural sector, on which tens of millions of people depend. This year Pakistan has taken crucial strides in battling these global challenges. The landmark legislation, the Climate Change Act 2017, brings Pakistan into the small group of countries with specific legislation building on the commitments

made in Paris in 2015. Its scope is impressive and reflects the scale of the challenges: establishment of the high-level Climate Change Council, the full-fledged Climate Change Authority and the Climate Change Fund. Such institutional arrangements are instrumental in fulfilling Pakistan’s international environmental commitments, but most importantly in building resilience and the national capacity to adapt to climate change. According to recent estimates, over the next 40-50 years it will cost Pakistan US$ 10.7 billion each year to adapt to climate change. The Climate Change Act is a step in the right direction to start addressing the issue and implement the action plans for mitigating the enormous risks and meeting the Sustainable Development Goals. Twenty-five years ago, the international community and Pakistan recognized that progress in human development was indivisible from sustainable development. In 2015, world leaders recognized that again both at the SDG summit and the Climate Change Conference (COP21). Support by all in Pakistan and internationally for the implementation of Pakistan’s climate change act is a necessity now. If that happens, twenty-five years from now on 5 June 2042, Pakistan is much more likely to be a country where the ef-

climate change

fects of climate change will have been mitigated and one where the Sustainable Development Goals were long ago met. Neil Buhne Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator, United Nations Pakistan


news and events

climate change

Partnering with Punjab to reduce smog The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has initiated a project with the Government of Punjab to identify the relationship between smog and the practice of crop-residue burning practices by farmers in the rice wheat belt of Punjab. An inception workshop for this initiative, R-SMOG (Remote Sensing for Spatio-Temporal Mapping of Smog) was held at the FAO Representation in Islamabad. Its aim was getting feedback from partners, and brainstorming in order to refine and improve the geospatial research. Welcoming participants to the workshop, Ms. Mina Dowlatchahi, FAO Representative to Pakistan expressed her hope that the fruitful deliberations of the experts in the workshop will bring extraordinary clarity into the issue that the Punjab government seeks to address. Smog is visible air pollution that combines smoke and fog. It can be caused by several factors such as nitrogen oxides, sulphur oxides, ozone, smoke or particulates. Heavy smog, loaded with pollutants covered major part of Punjab, especially the city of Lahore. This not only created serious health problems for the people of Punjab but also caused multiple road accidents

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and disrupted air traffic.The Department of Agriculture, Government of Punjab requested FAO to provide technical support to undertake a geospatial research to identify the relationship of smog to crop residue burning practices. Dr. Muhammad Tariq, Director Barani Research Institute Chakwal thanked FAO for taking the initiative and said that the study will prove instrumental in moving forward to tackle pollutants in the air. Representatives from the Department of Agriculture Punjab, Government of Punjab, officials from Ministry of Climate Change, Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission of Pakistan (SUPARCO), Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD), specialists from academia and project partners came together

for this first consultation workshop. This initiative will assist to generate scientific evidence to comprehend the situation in detail and to adopt adequate mitigation and adaptation strategies in the future. It will promote the development of appropriate strategies and necessary action plans. The initiative is in line with the third priority area of country framework of FAO for Pakistan, which tackles increased capacity of Government institutions related to Natural Resource Management (NRM), for design and implementation of the policies and strategies for integrated Natural Resource management and climate change adaption and mitigation.

news and events

disaster risk management

World Environment Day

About 80 percent of food insecure people in the world live in the countries that are prone to natural disasters and environmental degradation (The Index for Risk Management (INFORM), 2014- Natural Hazard Composite Indicator). Natural disasters affect the lives of millions of people, their livelihoods and infrastructure every year. In the past, Pakistan has faced many disasters including floods, earthquakes, drought and extreme rises in temperature. To strengthen the resilience of the disaster-affected communities, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) Pakistan has implemented the “Livelihoods and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) initiatives in Bajaur and Mohmand Agencies in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas �. Under the initiatives, WFP has supported the plantation of more than 200,000 fruit and forest trees which will prevent and mitigate the harmful effects of landslides, floods, and drought. In addition, WFP has

supported the construction of protection walls, covering 632,320 cft that will protect about 12,957 houses in wake of any natural disaster. These activities were implemented with the financial support from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and the Australian government. The initiatives contribute towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals on zero hunger , climate action, life on land , and partnerships for the goals.


news and events

drugs and crime

The judicial education system and the role of its academies On 14 May, a two-day event was hosted by the Punjab Judicial Academy, Lahore in collaboration with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), involving extensive consultative sessions focused on the “Judicial Education System and Future Role of Judicial Academies”. The first day involved consultative sessions on different thematic areas, articulating the needs of the education system in judiciary. The event was inaugurated by Mr Justice Shujaat Ali Khan, from Lahore High Court and featured a welcoming speech elaborating on key objectives by Mahrukh Aziz, Director General of the Punjab Judicial Academy. Several international and national experts shared their respective thoughts, with a special emphasis on drawing tangible recommendations for the future roadmap of Judicial Academies in the country. Subjects covered included curriculum development and review for judges and court staff; information technology and distance learning, monitoring and training evaluation; faculty development and linkages; research and publications; and administration of judicial education institutions. Ms. Jouhaida Hanano, Criminal Jus-

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tice advisor for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, informed participants on the United Nations Convention against Corruption, Global Judicial Integrity Network. Aftab Shuaib, Training Manage, explained the IT based, United Nations Global eLearning initiative for capacity building of human resources. The second day featured the presence of Chief Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah, Lahore High Court as the Chief Guest. Mahrukh Aziz welcomed all the honorable guests and commended the efforts of all participants in creating a successful event. Mr, Cesar Guedes, Country Representative for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, addressed the august house comprised of honorable Judges of Lahore High Court, legal professionals

and academia’s of civil society. He highlighted the need for continued and sustainable human resource development and awareness on international best practices. He also presented an overview of all the global initiatives UNODC is undertaking in the criminal justice system across the world and in Pakistan. He assured the legal fraternity on the resolve of UNODC country office Pakistan to provide full support in future endeavors. Mrs. Justice Ayesha A. Malik, Lahore High Court presented the Lahore Declaration on Future of Judicial Academies. She explained the decisions and recommendations reached through the previous day of consultative sessions.

news and events

drugs and crime

Enhancing coordination and cooperation amongst law enforcement agencies A two-day roundtable meeting for Law Enforcement Agencies for better coordination and understanding of human trafficking and migrant smuggling issues was organized in Islamabad. The event was jointly supported by the United States Department of State and Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection. Two more roundtables are in line to be organized in Quetta and Karachi in May 2017. Participants from the Federal Investigation Agency, Islamabad Police and National Accountability Bureau attended this two days meeting to recommend mechanisms for information sharing and better coordination. The concepts of Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and Smuggling of Migrants were renewed along with utilization of international best practices on Law Enforcement and Narcotics interdictions by both national and international trainers. For better coordination and information sharing, it was stressed to review current relationship and coordination between the agencies to develop formal procedures including the Memorandum of Understanding for referral of cases and other forms of cooperation. This will

not only help in creating mechanism for joint task forces but also will ensure and encourage information and data sharing on regular basis. Utilization of inter-agency resources was also emphasized where training facilities, including academies, modules and human resources can be utilized. Through this event UNODC vowed to present international best practices for improving cooperation and coordination amongst the agencies for the investigation, prosecution and protection of victims in both Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants


news and events

drugs and crime

Controlling the diversion of precursor chemicals United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Pakistan in collaboration with Narcotics Control Division (NCD) and Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) organized a two-day sensitization workshop on precursor control, for the chemical and pharmaceutical industry representatives on 4-5 May at Movenpick Hotel, Karachi. On behalf of Mr. Cesar Guedes, UNODC Representative in Pakistan, Ms. Anila Rahim, Program Officer, Precursors in her welcome address thanked the Government of Pakistan for their continued cooperation and highly appreciated the Government of Pakistan and its law enforcement agencies; for making concerted and highly commendable efforts in interdicting and seizing large amounts of illicit drugs and illegally diverted precursor chemicals destined for international markets. Mr. Toaha Hussain Bugti, Senior Joint Secretary; Narcotics Control Davison in his opening remarks, highlighted the important role of industry in helping law enforcement agencies combat drug trafficking and related crimes. He also expressed appreciation for UNODC’s support of the country’s law enforcement agencies in combating the trafficking of drugs and precursors to and from Paki-

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stan. The Program Officer dilated upon the UNODC global mandates including countering transnational organized crimes and illicit trafficking. She emphasized the importance of the workshop in the context of the UNODC Country Programme, Pakistan. Officials responsible for various control mechanisms at the Narcotics Control Division and Anti-Narcotics Force briefed the participants on the processes and rules followed at their levels; and discussed the problems faced by the industry as well by the regulatory and law enforcement agencies. In his address Col. Sajid Aslam covered the overall prevalent drug situation in the region, with special emphasis on the diversion of precursor chemicals. Upon workshop conclusion, certificates were distributed to the participants by Mr. Toaha Hussain on behalf of the Narcotics Control Division .

The workshop was attended by 40 individuals, including managers, supervisors, health and safety officers, proprietors, and traders of leading national industries based in Karachi including Zafa Chemicals, Ittefaq Traders, Indus motors co. LTD, Gul Ahmed Textiles mills, Denim clothing, Linz Pharmacia and many other notables in the relevant industries from Sindh. UNODC in coordination with the Narcotics Control Division & Anti Narcotics Force will organize a high profile workshop for the industry associations and relevant regulatory authorities and law enforcement on further strengthening the existing precursor diversion control mechanisms. This achievement was made possible by the generous support of the Government of Japan.

news and events

drugs and crime

E-learning available at law enforcement training centres The Comp u t e r- b a s e d Training (CBT) Centres established by UNODC in the law enforcement academies of Pakistan in over 50 locations have imparted training to 42,000 personnel, while their knowledge gains remained outstanding at 101% as measured through the pre and post-test results. In Punjab, over 15,000 personal of Punjab Police have undergone various training on crime prevention and investigation through this platform of the UNODC, completing a total 60,000 hours of training time. In this context, UNODC Pakistan Representative Cesar Guedes visited the newly established eLearning centre at Police Lines in Multan, where an inaugural session of the course was attended by 20 officers of Multan Police. The Centre was established by UNODC in 2016 with the support from Government of Denmark. Mr Guedes while talking to the press described eLearning Programme of UNODC as a success which complemented the traditional training system of Police to enhance the personnel’s knowledge in specialised areas along international standards. He said within the framework of UN-

ODC Pakistan Country Programme -II (2016-2019), eLearning has been identified as a priority assistance towards building the law enforcement capacity so it can meet the security challenges, as well as community expectations. He added that the training platform at over 50 locations in law enforcement in Pakistan will be upgraded in ‘eLearning’ as the most advanced tool of Training and Certification for the law enforcement. Regional Police Officer Sultan Azam Temuri complemented the UNODC’s contribution to Multan Police, for raising its personnel’s capacity in specialised crime areas on international standards. He also underscored that the use of forensic, technological and modern methods in investigation of crime were critical in developing an appropriate response against the high-tech crimes of the modern age. Temuri further mentioned latest initiatives

of Multan Police in public interest including the Traffic Theme Park and FM Radio that serve to enhance awareness among public concerning to security and their protection from becoming victims of heinous crimes such as drug abuse and human trafficking. The UNODC’s delegation also visited the Police Training Institute Multan where UNODC’s eLearning curricula has been integrated within the formal training system, at various levels including in Recruits’ Course, Lower School Course, Special Investigation Course, and Police Response Unit Course. The Principal of Institute SSP Maqsood Ahmad Khan Khichi informed the delegation that over 4000 recruits had completed training on core police functions through the eLearning platform, which culminated in a total of 16,000 hours of training time.


news and events

drugs and crime

Training on trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants held in Balochistan Under the European Union (EU funded GLO. ACT (Global Action to Address Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrant) project, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in partnership with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), conducted a two-day police and community awareness workshop on Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and Smuggling of Migrant (SOM) in Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan. The main aim of the training was to provide education on the crimes of TIP and SOM, particularly the adverse impact on victims, and prevention and protection measures that should be in place. The sessions were held in Quetta because criminal networks use Balochistan as the most common exit to smuggle migrants into Iran and Turkey, followed by Greece and other European destinations. According to the Federal Investigation Agency , there is a strong correlation between trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrant. In Pakistan, the Federal Investigation Agency found that there are many instances where an internally trafficked person ends up being smuggled into another country for further exploitation. Since it is the police

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that are mandated, under the Pakistani Penal Code, to deal with internal rafficking in Persons issues, close coordination is required. Mr. Jawad Hussein, Assistant Director for the Federal Investigation Agency in Balochistan, said that these sessions form part of a series of awareness raising workshops that are currently being rolled out for police and civil society in areas particularly affected by these two crimes. This time, 9 police officers, 5 from Federal Investigation Agency officers and 55 representatives from the local community, the media, academia and civil society participated. Ms. Sadaf Amjad, Assistant Professor from the Balochistan University applauded the efforts of UNODC and the FIA for providing a forum that encouraged the participation of such a broad segment of society. She said termed it a great initiative to involve the community directly. Armed with this knowledge trainers are now in a much better position to fight these criminals. She also explained that there are many

young and vulnerable students, keen to study aboard, that end up finding themselves being exploited by migrant smugglers. Mr. Ehsan Gilani, UNODC Senior National Researcher stressed the need for greater coordination amongst relevant stakeholders. He said that local law enforcement representatives for the areas as well as civil society need to help raise awareness about the scale of the problem and its negative impacts on its victims. He went on to explain that provincial police needs to collaborate with the FIA, since it is the police that has to respond to internal trafficking issues. He concluded by saying that he believed that with better coordination and information sharing, cases of these crime can be reduced. Mr. Liaqat Banori, Chairman of and NGO, Society for Human Rights and Prisoners’ Aid (SHARP) and renowned Lawyer of Islamabad High Court, highlighted the importance applying the correct and relevant sections of the Pakistani Penal

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Code and Criminal Procedure Code to the cases of these crimes. He said usually prosecutors are unable to identify the relevant sections of the Pakistani Penal Code, and explained that since there are legal provisions that criminalize this specific traffiking under various different Acts and Ordinances, adequate knowledge of these is required by prosecutors. He stressed that only the application of appropriate sections will ensure proper prosecution. He further added that the Prevention and Control of Human Trafficking Ordinance (PACHTO), promulgated in the year 2002, changed the whole picture with regards to the cases of these two crimes. At that time, the ordinance was a comprehensive legislation designed to ensure that Pakistan meets its obligations under various international treaties on TIP. However, it has now become apparent that revisions to the ordinance are required to be able to better differentiate between Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants. Concluding the workshop, Mr. Gilani reiterated the need for far greater coordination amongst key stakeholders and once again stressed the vital role civil society plays in the fight against these crimes.

drugs and crime

Training of trainers conducted in Islamabad UNODC organized Training of Trainers in collaboration with United States Department of State and Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection at Islamabad from 8-12 May. Approximately 17 officials from the Federal Investigation Agency, National Accountability Bureau, Islamabad Police and Punjab Police attended the five-day Training of Trainers (ToT) programme. The course is based on the toolkit developed by UNODC, which is aimed at strengthening the capacities of Law Enforcement Agencies in preventing Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling with victim centered approach in both investigation and prosecution. A documentary ‘Ways and Means - Effective Action Against the Smuggling of Migrants’ was also screened which promotes the four objectives of the Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air namely, prevention, prosecution, protection and cooperation. The ToT focused on providing an understanding of relevant domestic laws and policy frameworks, international law, and best practice guidelines in the field of Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling with victim centered approach. The

training not only enhanced he investigative, interviewing and communications skills of the participants but also exposed them to a great range of teaching and learning methods that are adaptable to a variety of audiences and different levels of prior knowledge and experience in the field environment. UNODC in Pakistan is helping to improve the sustainable capacity building of Law Enforcement Agencies by focusing on providing high-quality training and supportive technical equipment. This training of trainers will enable the agency personnel with necessary human and technical capacity to share the gained knowledge with other colleagues. Importance of such training sessions was emphasized for Law Enforcement Agencies with the continuous support provided by the UNODC Country Office in Pakistan.


news and events

drugs and crime

Revised immigration handbook and operational strategy validated

On 24 May, the UNODC Country Office Pakistan conducted a validation workshop in collaboration with the United States Department of State and the Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection at Islamabad. The purpose was to revise and upgrade the Immigration Handbook and the Operational Strategy of Federal Investigating Agency for field of Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling. The Immigration Handbook is a guide for frontline immigration officers that was drafted in the year 2007 by the then Director General. The purpose was to put together all the relevant laws, job descriptions, recommendations, standard operating procedures, circulars, standing orders and other important material related to human trafficking and migrants smuggling in one place, to enable easy access by practicing officers. Over time there came a need to revise and update the handbook by incorporating revisions in standard operating procedures, laws and standing orders. UNODC while

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assisting the Federal Investigation Agency revised the handbook and invited relevant officials for its validation. 10 middle level officers of the Federal Investigating Agency from four provinces were invited to provide their feedback and validate the revised material. Mr Naweed Riaz, a senior expert and International Law Enforcement Advisor UNODC, in his opening remarks stressed upon the importance of the Immigration Handbook. He said that it is a very important tool for a frontline officer while performing their immigration duties. It is a ready reference for any practical issues that may arise. The previous handbook was a great effort by the Federal Investigation Agency. UNODC has upgraded it after due consultation with the senior management of the Federal Investigating Agency . Revised standard operating procedures have been added along with many other relevant circulars that can come handy anytime while performing our duties. Mr Ehsan Gilani, a researcher from UNODC, briefed the participants about the draft operational strategy. He said that the strategy is based on 5Ps: Prevent, Protect, Partnership, Pursue and Prosecute. The operational strategy document chalks out recommendations that

are in line with international best practices and should be considered at all tiers. The participants received a wealth of knowledge from this experience and contributed towards a good delivery of the workshops. Suggested additions and changes were duly noted thereby making the Immigration Handbook more realistic, practical and innovative. UNODC will continue its support to the Federal Investigation Agency in Pakistan to become more effective at protecting the public against Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants.

news and events


Secondary school girls in Pakistan benefit from cash-based assistance

The World Food Programme (WFP) in Pakistan has launched its first cash-based assistance for secondary school girls in Pakistan as part of its support to the education programme of the Secretariat of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas . The Governments of Australia (Australia in Pakistan) and Canada (High Commission of Canada in Pakistan) are supporting this initiative. About 15,000 female students in 179 middle and high schools in 7 the tribal agencies and the frontier regions will take part in the innovative programme. Girls who attend at least 80 percent of classes each month will receive a cash grant of PKR 1000. Before each monthly cash disbursement, students and their mothers will receive information to raise their awareness of nutrition and general health and hygiene within the family. WFP Country Director Finbarr Curran said the programme will encourage girls to continue their studies to secondary level and help keep them in school, which is a key

to the development of the region. Australian High Commissioner Margaret Adamson said Australia is pleased to support WFP’s education programme in these tribal areas, enabling underprivileged families to send their children, particularly girls, to school. She added that Investing in education is essential for every country’s successful social and economic development, and that there is global recognition of the vital importance of providing girls with equal access to education, both to realize their own potential, and for the broader dividends for the society. Canadian High Commissioner Perry Calderwood noted the people of this region are among those who suffered most in the fight against terrorism, and that by supporting their reintegration, the international community is demonstrating its

solidarity with their plight. The region suffers from exceptionally low levels of female literacy and most girls of high school age are not enrolled. WFP has established a feedback mechanism at each school to involve the local community in monitoring the schools receiving assistance, which is a standard practice for WFP programmes. WFP has been providing education support in these tribal areas since 2008 and has assisted nearly 300,000 students in 1,700 government primary and secondary schools. In partnership with UNICEF and UNESCO, WFP will further explore possibilities of joint programmes to promote quality education in FATA, building on previous joint initiatives.


news and events

freedom of press

World Press Freedom Day Critical Minds for Critical Times is the theme of the 2017 World Press Freedom Day. “Only the independence, the character, the objectivity and the good judgment of journalists and the media can overcome the terrible storms of the new world that threaten freedom of information everywhere.” Guillermo Cano Isaza, a Colombian journalist assassinated in 1986, wrote these words two years prior to his death and they continue to resonate today, as we celebrate World Press Freedom Day and the 20th anniversary of the UNESCO/ Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize. Facing a crisis of audience identity, journalism stands before a horizon where old challenges are merging with new threats. The media business is being shaken to the core with the rise of digital networks and social media. Citizen journalists are redrawing the boundaries of journalism. Media accountability and credibility are falling under question. Online, the lines are blurring between advertising and editorial material, and we see private actors rising as key intermediaries, accompanied by new forms of ‘private censorship.’ These challenges merge with deeper transformations affecting societies. The Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year for 2016 is “post-truth.” Combined with

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the concept of “fake news,” questions are rising that go to the heart of free, independent and professional journalism. All this comes at a time when free, independent and pluralistic media has never been so important for empowering individual women and men, strengthening good governance and the rule of law, and taking forward the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development -- specifically, Sustainable Development Goal 16, to build just, peaceful and inclusive societies. The media should provide a platform for a multitude of voices and mobilise new forces for tolerance and dialogue. The stakes are clear. We need original, critical and well-researched journalism, guided by high professional and ethical standards and quality media education, combined with audiences that have the right media and informa-

tion literacy skills. UNESCO is leading this work across the world, starting by standing up for the safety of journalists. Far too often, murder remains the most tragic form of censorship: 102 journalists paid the ultimate price in 2016. This is unacceptable and weakens societies as a whole. This is why UNESCO is spearheading the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity with partners around the globe. Critical times call for critical minds. I call on everyone to sharpen their minds to defend the freedoms that are essential for justice and peace. This is UNESCO’s message for the 2017 World Press Freedom Day. Irina Bokova Director-General, UNESCO

news and events

freedom of press

Celebrating World Press Freedom Day in Peshawar On 3 May, students


Department Journalism Mass

the of and


nications of the University of Peshawar had the opportunity to share ideas and exchange information with senior journalists, media experts, and international stakeholders on topics that are relevant for enabling freedom of expression in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Federally Administered Tribal Areas, and the rest of Pakistan. Roundtable discussions, moderated by theme experts, focused on three main topics - Gender in Media, Investigative Journalism and Stress, and Social Media - and resulted in key recommendations for advancing SDG 16 target 10 and fostering freedom of expression in Pakistan. On the issue of gender in the media, recommendations included increasing women representation in outlets, especially at the decision-making level; and develop appropriate legislations to provide female professionals with a secure working environment. On the issue of investigative journalism and stress, it was recommended to define investigative journalism and ‘national interests’, to formulate proper codes of conduct, and to set up a press council to address journalists’ concerns. On the issue of social media, it was

recommended to increase digital liter-

UNESCO Pakistan commemorated

acy and public awareness on the pos-

the 2017 World Press Freedom Day

itive use of social media.

jointly with the European Union, the

Participants were inspired by two key-

Embassy of the Kingdom of the Neth-

note speakers who set the stage for

erlands, the Embassy of Sweden, in

the fruitful discussions. Ms. Mahrukh

collaboration with the Department of

Jabeen, reporter for Tribal News Net-

Journalism and Mass Communication,

work (TNN) and the first woman jour-

University of Peshawar.ì

nalist from the FATA region highlighted the difficulties of female journalists who work in the field, while expressing that despite all challenges, she is still determined to pursue her career as a journalist Ms. Farzana Ali, Bureau Chief of Aaj Television, equally described the challenges faced by female journalists in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. She argued for the need to increase women representation in media particularly at decision-making level in the media houses.


news and events

gender equality and women’s empowerment

Making public transport safe for women Towards making public transport accessible, safe and harassment-free for women and girls, a safety audit in public transport was conducted in Lahore to assess women’s perceptions and actual state of safety, and increase their participation in local decision-making. Local studies reveal that women’s mobility is compromised due to the discomfort, social stigma and fear when having to sit in close contact with male strangers. Women also face distinct challenges when accessing public transport, including danger when walking to and waiting at bus-stops, and while traveling. The Government of Punjab has attempted to address these concerns through their transport policy, by introducing separate sections in buses and running women-only buses. However, challenges still remain. As part of its ‘Safe Cities’ project, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) in collaboration with Punjab’s Women Development Department (WDD) and Aurat Foundation (AF) will conduct the Women’s Safety Audit with support from the Government of Australia. This initiative will be carried out together with the Punjab Safe Cities Authority (PSCA), the Chief Minister’s Strategic Reforms Unit (SRU) and the Punjab Commission on the Status

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of Women (PCSW). Jamshed Kazi, Country Representative, UN Women Pakistan said that they have taken an important first step to bring the issue to the forefront. Along with partners, they envisage safer, smarter and more sustainable cities and communities where women and girls can move around easily with equal rights, opportunities and dignity. Bushra Aman, Secretary Punjab’s Women Development Department said that the safety audit will serve to supplement the government’s priorities for women empowerment in Punjab. Significant inputs leading to policy and implementation changes in urban planning are foreseen after its conclusion. Mumtaz Mughal, Resident Director of the Aurat Foundation shared that the policy recommendations of this study will inform the provincial plans and policies and contribute towards making urban planning more gender-responsive. Akbar Nasir Khan, Chief Operating Officer of the Punjab Safe Cities Au-

thority spoke of how the Authority was tackling women’s harassment through technology, explaining that a Women Safety Smartphone Application was launched with buttons which connects users to police, emergency services, and the helpline of the Punjab Commission on the Status of Women. Salman Sufi, Director General of the Chief Minister’s Strategic Reforms Unit said that the Punjab government has prioritized women’s protection and security, and the data collected through the audit will be useful in initiating innovative approaches. Fauzia Viqar, Chairperson from the the Punjab Commission on the Status of Women said that women’s equality and participation in the economy also involves their equal right to participation in public spaces and public life, and that this cannot be ensured if women face constant fear and impending harassment.

news and events

health and nutrition

Stunting and wasting, a major threat for child survival and development in South Asian nations

A regional conference held in Kathmandu on 16 May, organized jointly by the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) identified actions to accelerate progress in the care of severely wasted children, an issue which affects 8 million children in South Asia. The conference brought together government representatives, UN partners and civil society organizations from across South Asia, together with regional and global experts on nutrition, who exchanged analyses and experience on addressing wasting in the context of overall nutrition programming. South Asia remains the epicentre of the global child wasting and stunting crisis. Severe wasting compromises the ability of children to grow and develop to their full potential, contributing to stunted growth and cognitive deficits as well as increased mortality risk.

The costs of doing nothing for families and nations are considerable: stunted children earn 20 percent less as adults compared to non-stunted children, constraining economic growth across the region. Jean Gough, Regional Director for UNICEF in South Asia said that the first priority is ensuring the healthy growth and development of children. This requires interventions to improve women’s nutrition before and during pregnancy, actions to support breastfeeding from the very first hour of life, interventions to improve the quality of food for young children, and programmes to protect children from infections. And when these prevention efforts fail and children become severely wasted, it is critical they receive appropriate care and treatment to safeguard their lives, growth and development. Across South Asia, less than five percent of the 8 million severely wasted

children are receiving appropriate care and treatment. This low coverage is adding to the burden of mortality and morbidity in young children and limiting the growth and development of the untreated millions. Early detection and treatment of wasting are powerful actions to reduce stunting and its negative impacts. Amjad Hussain Sial, Secretary General of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation said that investing in the capacity of communities, community-based organizations and civil society groups to identify and address undernutrition within their communities is the core of our endeavours for a collective approach to nutrition in South Asia. This investment is the key to unlocking the potential of this generation and the next. Community-based approaches are critical to preventing and treating severe wasting. Over 50 countries have adopted community-based management of severe wasting, including Afghanistan, Nepal and Pakistan. These community-based care approaches are already saving thousands of lives and safeguarding the growth and development of many more children, by making affordable services available to families.


news and events

health and nutrition

Saudi Arabia provides dates to disadvantaged people

The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre donated 878 metric tons of dates to disadvantaged Pakistanis. The dates will be distributed to over 350,000 vulnerable people by the World Food Programme (WFP) Pakistan. The dates will diversify WFP’s food basket provided to the temporarily displaced people of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and vulnerable community members engaged in WFP livelihood interventions throughout Pakistan. Part of this contribution will also be provided to pregnant and nursing women, and children to give them additional vitamins and minerals that are essential for normal growth, development, and overall well-being. The dates were handed over to WFP during a ceremony at the Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Islamabad in the presence of the acting Country Director of WFP Pakistan Mr. Stephen Gluning. On this occasion His Excellency Mr. Marwan Ridwan Merdad reaffirmed the close brotherly relations with Pakistan and said that the government of the Custodian of the Two Holy

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Mosques King Salman Bin Abdulaziz is committed to the wellbeing of the people of Pakistan. Acting Country Director of WFP Pakistan welcomed this donation and expressed gratitude to the Saudi government for the generous contribution. The World Food Programme has started the distribution of Saudi dates to malnourished children and mothers registered in the nutrition programme in district Tharparkar Sindh, in an ef-

fort to reduce malnutrition and improve the overall health of families. 2kg of dates will be distributed to each beneficiary to improve the dietary diversity of 9250 registered people. Approximately 18.5 MT of dates will be distributed to 4750 moderately acute malnourished children and 4500 moderately acute malnourished pregnant and breastfeeding women.

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health and nutrition

Commemorating World Family Doctor Day The World Health Organization (WHO) announced its collaboration with the World Organization of Family Doctors, (WONCA), to celebrate World Family Doctor Day on May 19. The WHO Regional Office, that also covers Pakistan, positioned family practice as a strategic priority for strengthening health systems during the period 2017- 2021. WHO is pursuing four streams of work to promote and strengthen family practice-based health services in the Region: raising awareness among policy makers; strengthening knowledge of family medicine among general practitioners; building the capacity of ministries of health to implement family practice; and providing technical support for the establishment of family practice programmes. In his statement, Dr. Mohammad Assai, representative of WHO for Pakistan mentioned that WHO is committed to providing continuing technical support to its Member States, including Pakistan, in adopting a strategic approach, standards, and elements for implementation of family practices. He added that to overcome the shortage of family physicians in the Region, WHO in collaboration with academic institutes are conducting online training for capacity building of general

practitioners in family medicine. Based on the available information in 2016, the total number of certified family physicians in the Region is 3,225. Calculating against the international standard requirement of at least three family physicians per 10,000 people, the regional figure is very low. Countries of the Region are in need of 185,497 family physicians in order to cover 100% of the population – a huge gap to overcome. At the same time, some medical schools do not even have family medicine departments.


news and events

human rights

Training programme on human rights for Pakistani and Afghan documentary makers

For the first time ever, documentary makers from Pakistan and Afghanistan will work together with professional trainers to produce state-ofthe-art documentaries on human rights issues in a two week training programme to be held in July on 1728 July in Karachi. The objective of this training programme is to provide a platform for Pakistani and Afghan documentary-makers to promote human rights and peacebuilding, and to enhance dialogue among media professionals of the two countries. Documentaries produced during this programme will be broadcast on radio and TV as well as documentary festivals across the world. This is a joint initiative of Foundation Hirondelle, the Centre for Excellence in Journalism, International Film Festival and Forum of Human Rights and the United Nation Information Centre, and is funded by the Embassy of Switzerland to Pakistan. Marc P. George, Ambassador of Switzerland in Pakistan said that the Swiss government is proud to offer this unique opportunity to enhance dialogue and professional relations between young Pakistani and Af-

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ghan documentary makers by developing common projects with the support of professionals. Kamal Siddiqi, Director Centre for Excellence in Journalism said it should be a regional centre for excellence in Journalism, with the exciting prospect of having journalists from Afghanistan and Pakistan come together and collaborate at its stateof-the-art facilities. The initiative will help build bridges of understanding between the two countries. Caroline Vuillemin, CEO Fondation Hirondelle suggested that the training is an exciting opportunity to marry capacity building and production for the participants. Experts at the Fondation Hirondelle are confident that the mixed team will bring new angles and rich inputs to the stories for unique documentaries. Vittorio Cammarota, Director UN Information Centre said that the project is ground-breaking, and it will

empower documentary makers from Pakistan and Afghanistan to build peaceful relations while promoting human rights. Participants in the training have an unprecedented opportunity to showcase their work on international platforms.

news and events

industrial and economic development

Women entrepreneurship – supporting smart economies

Through new collaborations across disciplines and sectors, the Global Cleantech Innovation Programme (GCIP) in Pakistan has been able to build national capacity for clean technologies. At the same time it has fostered a supportive local entrepreneurial ecosystem for the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and startups, by developing a resource synergistic initiative in Pakistan, always ensuring gender mainstreaming and increased female participation in the Cleantech competition. Through the growing community of national and international partners, selected Pakistani cleantech entrepreneurs are connected to potential partners in other Small and Medium Enterprises countries. At the Cleantech Global Forum in Silicon Valley, USA, the most innovative cleantech entrepreneurs come

together to forge networks, and meet potential partners and investors from around the world. To provide diverse opportunities to women in clean technologies, a Women Business Growth Centre (WBGC) was launched, in collaboration with the Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI). The Centre is designed to strengthen institutional support services and to deliver improved Business Development and Competitiveness Services (BDCS) for women entrepreneurs in selected industrial sectors. The programme in Pakistan believes that as clean entrepreneurs, women can offer meaningful employment to others that is economically rewarding, socially responsible, and environmental beneficial. The project interventions are focused to highlight that women are important agents of change and play

an active and substantial role in sustainability, and further development outcomes. The campaign on “Women in Green Industry” advocates that an enabling policy environment, coupled with deliberate action by various stakeholders are necessary to utilize the full potential of women’s participation in green growth. In addition to accessing new sectors, women entrepreneurs are able to explore their niche by greening the existing products and services. In this regard, opportunities exist in green sectors of the economy as clean technologies, energy trading, recycling and waste reduction. The programme campaign promoted green entrepreneurship for women by bringing together all stakeholders, to secure commitments and mobilize actions, in support of sustainable industrial models. The campaign sensitized all stakeholders to join hands for strengthening participation of women in cleantech and green industry. The overall idea is to identify non-conventional business opportunities for women in cleantech sector. The programme has been able to build the technical and entrepreneurial capacity of women while connecting women professionals with a shared interest in clean technologies for networking, peer support and exchange with access to role models, and success stories of leading women entrepreneurship.


news and events

industrial development/economy

Pakistani cleantech innovators participate in important forum on clean energy Innovators from Pakistan who won the Global Cleantech Innovation Programme (GCIP) competition under the auspices of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) were sponsored to participate in the Vienna Energy Forum (VEF) in Vienna, Austria. The competition has been carried out for the past three years by UNIDO with funding from the Global Environment Facility (GEF) to promote innovative ideas and climate-related solutions to deal with imperative climate change challenges. At the fifth Vienna Energy Forum , nineteen side events were held, bringing together worldwide experts in the field of energy to discuss how to facilitate policymaking and implementation, capacity development, knowledge management and awareness-raising, as well as how to encourage investment in clean and innovative energy solutions. UNIDO Pakistan presented their achievements in a side event on gender mainstreaming. Pakistan had the highest number of women applicants and winners at national and global levels for the programme in 2016. The side events aimed to contribute to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, the Paris Agreement, and in particular Sustainable Development Goal 7, to ensure affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all. Cleantech

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innovators presented their startups as engines of growth contributing towards employment and wealth creation whilst safeguarding the environment. The Global Winner Ms Zilay Mariam, Chief Executive Officer of Green Team (GCIP PK winner 2016) was happy to see energetic people working tirelessly to provide a sustainable place for future generations. She mentioned that women do not need support but opportunities such as the Global Cleantech Innovation Programme , that have helped her in achieving her entrepreneur dream. The runner-up of this programme in Paksitan, Mr. Hassam Ud Din said that getting to learn from industry experts and seeing their passion has made his company, HempCo’s resolve of reaching sustainable development firmer. He was proud to see where Pakistan is headed with the efforts of UNIDO and the Global Environment Facility .

Vienna Energy Forum 2017 highlighted the multiplier effects of integrated approaches for sustainable development. The great potential of sustainable energy was discussed- linking energy to water, food and health -as well as innovation as a global driver for accelerated sustainable growth. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aim to address problems of inequality, hunger and climate change. The forum 2017 focused specifically on addressing the linkages among the key SDGs and their contribution to the 2030 Development Agenda, with an emphasis on better policy analysis and institutional arrangements needed to spur innovation, as well as tools necessary to increase its role as a driver of economic growth, job creation and sustainable development.

news and events

industrial development/economy

Together with the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for peaceful sustainable development Mr Haoliang Xu, the UN Assistant Secretary General and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific met key officials of the Government of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), including Mr Pervez Khattak, Chief Minister and Mr Iqbal Zafar Jhagra Governor of the province to reiterate support for community resilience, rule of law, sustainable return and rehabilitation of FATA’s temporarily displaced people, employment, youth engagement and economic development in order to achieve peaceful sustainable development in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas. KPK province is a key partner for UNDP in the national initiative to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In the context of KP’s high poverty rate, low literacy and vulnerability to natural and human-made disasters, this collaboration has led to key partnerships. UNDP and the Government of KPK agreed to support ecotourism and procurement to develop campsites in the province’s most scenic locations. This project will promote ecotourism and employ local youth by establishing camping villages in KPK with a total outlay of PKR 300

million. These will promote tourism, create jobs for local youth, build local economies and foster social cohesion and ecological awareness. UNDP will provide technical support and contribute US$ 50,000 to provide business management training to 500 youth. The Government of KP will contribute the remainder through a cost-sharing agreement. In collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), World Food Programme (WFP), and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), UNDP is providing holistic support to 200,000 returning households through the “Community Resilience and Recovery Support to FATA’s Returning Temporarily Dislocated Persons ” project funded by the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) and focused primarily on Khyber and South Waziristan agencies.

Mr. Xu’s visit to the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province also included the inauguration of the command and control centre (CCC) at Peshawar’s Central Police Office together with Salah-ud-Din Khan Mehsud, Inspector General of Police, KP. UNDP supported the installation of a European Union-funded data analysis centre (DAC) at the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Central Police Office. The centre will enhance Police coordination and decrease response time to public order problems and security threats. Mr Xu reiterates UNDP’s commitment to partnering with the province to help build a future of sustainable development and peace for all its people The United Nations Resident Coordinator Mr Neil Buhne and UNDP Country Director Mr Ignacio Artaza were also present at the meeting.


news and events

industrial development/economy

Cluster development training in Lahore A four-day training course on “Cluster Development Methodology� organized by UNIDO has started in Lahore, conducted by international expert Mr. Vedat Kunt, who helped in the training of the Cluster Development Initiative (CDI) project staff. UNIDO has been implementing its cluster development methodology in a number of countries around the world and has been able to create a substantial positive impact in terms of value addition, export integration, poverty alleviation and inclusive growth. In the framework of the Punjab Industrial Cluster Development Initiative, the government of Punjab has signed a cooperation agreement with UNIDO to provide technical assistance for the development of industrial clusters in Punjab province and to support their integration into global value chains. The initiative aims at creating an enabling environment for the growth and prosperity of industries, to create a better quality of life through economic uplift in Punjab and to up-grade technology and enhance productivity quality, and profitability of local industries. The lead on the implementation of the initiative for the Government of Punjab is with the Punjab Small Industries Coopera-

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


tion (PSIC) as the focal government institution. The cluster development project is part of a joint initiative of the World Bank Group and Government of Punjab, under the Punjab jobs and competitiveness program. UNIDO has been engaged as partner implementing agency for the project based on earlier interventions in the area of trade-related capacity-building and development of industrial clusters, both in Pakistan and globally. The cluster management team hired under this initiative will initially work with four target clusters (Surgical, ready-made garments, leather shoes and accessories and auto parts) within the Punjab Prov-

ince under the guidance of UNIDO’s experts. The project will benefit local Small and Medium Enterprises within selected clusters by helping them to organize themselves into networks and take advantage of common opportunities.

news and events


Social dialogue on labour laws in Balochistan The International Labour Organization (ILO) is supporting the Government of Balochistan to enact a number of labour laws. The Government is formulating and strengthening legislation, particularly in the areas of child labour, freedom of association and collective bargaining, and setting of minimum wages, through the review of various labour laws, which will then strengthen the application of International labour standards (ILS). Three days of technical consultations took place in Quetta, followed by a special meeting of the Provincial Tripartite Consultation Committee (PTCC). Labour welfare and law department officials participated to ensure application of fundamental labour rights of workers in line with ratified ILO Conventions. The ILO team comprising Ms. Miranda Fajerman, ILO, International labour standards Specialist and Mr. Abid Niaz Khan, National Project Coordinator for the GSP+ Project provided technical advice. The Balochistan Industrial Relations Act (BIRA), Minimum Wages Bill, Payment of Wages Bill and Prohibition of Employment of Children Bill were reviewed in light of current practices, challenges, International

labour standards , and observations of ILO supervisory bodies. Outcomes of the technical discussions were tabled to the Committee . Mr. Shuja ul Mulk Gichki, Director General of Labour Welfare, Balochistan suggested his office will circulate the draft laws and technical inputs received to the members of the Provincial Tripartite Consultation Committee and a follow-up meeting will be convened after Eidul-Fitr. The final drafts will then enter further legislative process. Ms. Ingrid Christensen, Country Director for ILO Pakistan emphasized the need for laws that are comprehensive and well-formulated, so as to ensure effective labour protection at work, consistency across the different laws and the need for inter departmental coordination for holistically protecting the workers and preventing child labour in Balochistan.

The technical discussions and Committee meeting were arranged by a technical cooperation project funded by the European Commission with the purpose of supporting the governments in Pakistan to sustain the GSP+ facility, which was granted to Pakistan in January, 2014 for a ten years term conditioned to better compliance and reporting of 27 UN Conventions including 8 core labour conventions. The 18th Constitutional amendment had necessitated that all provinces enact their own laws on devolved subjects. Rational and ILS compliant labour legislation is an important means towards ensuring the protection of labour rights and ILO has been providing technical assistance and coordination to various provinces to complete their first cycle of labour legislation.


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Orientation on international labour standards in Balochistan Representatives of all trade unions of Balochistan gathered for orientation on International Labour Standards (ILS) by ILO. The orientation was attended by trade union members from Pakistan Workers Federation (PWF), Pakistan Workers Confederation Balochistan (PWCB) and All Pakistan Labour Federation (APLF). Many of the affiliated union members from irrigation, agriculture, public health engineering, Pakistan Mineral Development Corporation, Bolan Mining Enterprise, and others were also present. Ingrid Christensen, Country Director, ILO Country Office for Pakistan suggested it is important that trade union members from all backgrounds and diverse representation know the International Labour Standards and their role in compliance of these standards. The tripartite partners from 187 member states develop International Labour Standards, and ILO assists in actualization of these standards at respective national levels. The one day orientation session was organized by the International Labour and Environmental Standards Project on Friday, May 19, 2017 at Quetta Serena Hotel. The Project is supported by the European Union.

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The discussions were facilitated by Ms. Miranda Fajerman, Specialist, International Labour Standards, ILO and the ILO’s Decent Work Team for the South-Asia. Detailed sessions throughout the day included development of the and supervision mechanism, national situation on ILS compliance, trade unions’ role in monitoring and reporting on compliance, International Labour Standards on child labour, and strategies to address child labour. Abdul Salam Baloch, Chairman, Pakistan Workers Federation said that it is satisfying to note that ILO is focusing on compliance of the ILS. Mr. Ramzan Achakzai, President, Pakistan Workers Confederation Balochistan welcomed ILO working with all federations and affiliated trade unions which will increase the impact of labour movement in Pakistan. Abdul Haleem Khan, Media

Secretary, All Pakistan Labour Federation said the ILO also needs to further its support to the trade unions in this marginalized province. Ms. Rukhsana Khalid, Chairman Women Wing, All Pakistan Labour Federation shared that ILO encourages women workers to also come ahead and work for their rights at work. Moreover, she said that the session informed trade union leaders on the role in the compliance, and that they intend to continue the struggle in this regard.

news and events


Capacity building workshop on counter trafficking and migrant smuggling IOM Pakistan organized a twoday capacity building workshop on Counter Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling in Islamabad on May 23-24 under the Australian Government Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) funded project ‘Strengthening Reception Capacity of Immigration Authorities in Pakistan’. The workshop focused on various topics including trafficking in persons, migrant smuggling, victim identification, interviewing victims of trafficking and victim assistance. Participants included officials of Federal Investigation Agency and Provincial Police Departments.


news and events

refugees and displaced persons

Displaced people receive shelter material The UN Refugee Agency handed over 4,000 tents, 8,000 plastic sheets and 4,000 core relief item kits to the Disaster Management Authority (FDMA) of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas , aiming at supporting the government’s efforts to facilitate returns to South Waziristan and North Waziristan Agencies. Most of Pakistan’s internally displaced people have returned to their homes in the tribal areas while some 49,000 families await their return. Indrika Ratwatte, the UNHCR Representative in Pakistan, formally handed over the shelter materials to the Director General of the FATA Disaster Management Authority , Muhammad Khalid and officials from the Secretariats of Temporarily Dislocated Persons and FATA. Ratwatte mentioned that UNHCR always stood by the people of Pakistan in times of crisis, and noted that those going back had been displaced for years, and that their lives had been severely disrupted. The shelter materials are meant to provide the people who are in dire need of shelter some relief until they are able to reconstruct their damaged houses.

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UNHCR Representative also welcomed the government’s commitment to ensure the return of these persons is carried out voluntarily and in safety and dignity. UNHCR, as part of the wider United Nations response in Pakistan supports the Government of Pakistan with the return of the internally displaced people to areas in the country where the security situation has improved. UNHCR had supported the Pakistani communities throughout the period from displacement to return. From 2010 to 2016, UNHCR has provided USD 200 million to the IDP operations in Pakistan, primarily for shelter and non-food items, camp coordina-

tion and camp management and protection. In 2016, UNHCR assisted the displaced population and 40,000 returnee families with emergency shelters and core relief items (CRIs) in the tribal areas, (Khyber, Kurram, Orakzai and South Waziristan and North Waziristan agencies).

news and events

refugees and displaced persons

Skills development for Afghan refugees

The closing ceremony of training of the first batch of trainees of Skills Development Program (SDP) initiated under the United Nations’ Refugees Affected and Hosting Areas (RAHA) programme was held at Peshawar University on 16 May. The Chief Commissioner for Afghan Refugees, Dr. Imran Zeb distributed certificates and toolkits among the leading trainees of all the institutes that implemented the programme training. The training was initiated by the Ministry of States and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) and supported by the UN Refugee Agency. The planning and

implementation was done by the Secretariat of the Refugee Affected and Hosting Areas and its Cell in all four provinces. This training signifies a gesture of goodwill by the government of Pakistan and UNHCR for Afghan refugees living in Pakistan over three decades. The aim is to help prepare the Afghan youth to become responsible citizens and play a positive role in the reconstruction of their country. A total of 755 trainees from nine districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, five districts of Balochistan and one from each district of Sind and Punjab were trained

in a three-months course, which started in January 2017. The Chief Commissioner noted that it was heartening to see the zeal and keenness displayed by Afghan refugees and their Pakistan hosts. Mr. Indrika Ratwatte, UNHCR Representative highlighted the importance of investing in youth empowerment and building the human capital of future generations of Afghans. Besides the Chief Guest, Yaqub Mahsud, Chief Coordinator of the project also attended the ceremony.


news and events

refugees and displaced persons

Handicraft products by Afghan refugees showcased The Entrepreneurship and Community Development Institute (ECDI) and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) organised a two-day exhibition with the theme ‘make beautiful things’ to showcase and promote handicraft products made by Pakistani communities and Afghan refugees on May 13 and 14 in Islamabad. The products exhibited at the Loafology Cafe were prepared by Afghan refugees and the neighbouring Pakistani communities in Haripur and Peshawar districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa during a sixmonth pilot programme supported under the UNHCR Refugee Affected and Hosting Area (RAHA) livelihood programmes. The institute designed a special product range and linked the artisans with manufacturers at the national level to facilitate relations between international buyers and artisans in rural areas. The finished collection was sold at the exhibition in Islamabad as well as online through Polly and Other Stories, a social enterprise, to help with the technical and business side, and will target National, Regional and International markets in order to support efforts to generate livelihoods for refugees and

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host communities. The pilot project, which ran from November 2016 – May 2017, worked directly with 150 artisans and a number of local and international businesses to connect artisans to a national and global value chain. The overall project was valued at PKR 5,500,000, a significant portion of which went directly into the costs of designing and making the products. The line includes leather bags and totes with exquisite handwork, quilted fabric bags, high-end cotton quilts, cushions, notebooks and scarves. Artisanal craft represents an opportunity for livelihood generation by displaced people. Materials, patterns, carving styles and oth-

er techniques are often unique to specific groups and tribes and represent deep cultural affiliations that have been passed through generations. There is huge potential for development actors to support the harnessing of unique crafts with moving stories to create productive and sustainable livelihood opportunities for some of the world’s most vulnerable people. The project, although short, has left considerable impact on the social cohesion between Afghan refugee and Pakistani communities as both communities have started joint production and shared in enterprise profits.

news and events

refugees and displaced persons

Establishing a centre for refugees and migration studies in Quetta The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) signed a partnership agreement with Balochistan University of Information Technology, Engineering and Management Sciences (BUITEMS) aiming at establishing a Centre for Refugees and Migration Studies (CRMS) as well as provision of training for refugee teachers, and opportunities for entrepreneurship/ business studies for refugee students in the university. On the occasion, a plaque marking the establishment of the Centre was unveiled jointly by UNHCR Country Representative, Indrika Ratwatte, Chief Commissioner for Afghan Refugees Dr. Imran Zeb and BUITEMS Vice Chancellor, Engr. Ahmed Farooq Bazai. Delivering an inaugural lecture titled “Management of Refugees and Migrants for Lasting Regional Peace”, Indrika Ratwatte praised the commitment of the university for providing opportunities for refugees, terming it as an important step towards empowering youth and achieving broader goals for peace and prosperity in the region. Vice Chancellor of the university, Ahmed Farooq Bazai stressed the need for quality education, research, and academic exercises on socio-economic issues in the region including the challenges pertaining to refugees and migrants. The Vice

Chancellor stated that BUITEMS is producing global citizens capable of finding tailored solutions to some of the compelling regional and global challenges. He assured that the university is fully prepared to support the national and international community in their endeavours. Once operational, the CRMS will serve as a repository of information on issues related to refugees and migration, and analyse and disseminate this to the wider audience, through regular publications of research works, talk programmes and organising periodic events like seminars/workshops. UNHCR will also facilitate the university in its efforts to strengthen the centre’s capacity by networking with other similar research centres and education institutions globally. Chief Commissioner for Afghan Ref-

ugees Dr. Imran Zeb thanked UNHCR and Balochistan University of Information Technology, Engineering and Management Sciences for entering into this important collaboration which should help further nurture the existing harmonious relationship and understanding between refugee and host communities and enable sustainable solutions for refugees who have endured displacement for almost four decades. The event was also attended by UNHCR Deputy Representative, Johann Siffointe; Head of UNHCR sub-office Quetta Dinesh Shrestha; Commissioner Afghan Refugees Quetta, Brig (R) Masood Ahmad; Afghan Consul General, Mr. Wajeedullah Momand; university’s faculty members and students, and representatives of UN agencies and civil society.


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refugees and displaced persons

Australia backs assistance to undocumented Afghans in Pakistan

The Australian Government and IOM Pakistan have launched a two-year, AUD 4 million (USD 3 million) project to help undocumented Afghans in Pakistan and their host communities, as well as those returning to Afghanistan. In 2016, an unprecedented number of Afghans returned to Afghanistan, mainly from Pakistan and Iran. They included over 250,000 undocumented returnees and over 380,000 registered refugees. This year, as of June 20th, over 100,000 Afghans have returned home, including almost 70,000 undocumented returnees from Pakistan. This is a 250 percent increase over the number of returnees during the first six months of 2016. Australia’s contribution will enable IOM and its partners to help the Government of Pakistan to develop sustainable solutions for the estimated 500,000-600,000 Afghan nationals still living in Pakistan. Australian High Commissioner to Pakistan Margaret Adamson said Australia is committed to partnerships, which promote stability in the region and to help the most vulnerable, particularly women and children.

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The new Australian funding will also help IOM and its partners to monitor migration flows and conduct host community surveys to help the Pakistani and Afghan governments, humanitarian stakeholders and returning communities to make better-informed decisions relating to safe and humane migration. IOM Pakistan will also use the funding to provide primary health care services and vocational business training for undocumented Afghans and host communities in Pakistan. This will help the Afghans to start new livelihoods and reintegrate when they return to Afghanistan, as well as provide new economic opportunities for host communities. The funding will also help IOM to support the Government of Pakistan to implement its ‘Repatriation and

Management Policy for Afghan Refugees,’ which includes the registration of undocumented Afghans living in Pakistan. IOM Pakistan Chief of Mission Davide Terzi said IOM is fully committed to support tailored solutions for undocumented Afghans in Pakistan. He added that Pakistan has been host to millions of Afghans for over 30 years, and it is imperative to devise comprehensive programmes that facilitate returns, create viable options for those that decide to stay and support the Pakistani host communities. As part of the IOM Regional Response Strategy, IOM Pakistan is seeking USD 21 million to support the most vulnerable undocumented Afghans during 2017-18.

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Photo Exhibition on Sustainable Development Goals kicks off in Karachi

May at Sadequain Art Gallery, Frere Hall Karachi. The exhibition highlights human stories of Pakistani people through 102 photos organized in 17 collections according to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Jointly organized by Agence FrancePresse (AFP), the European Union, and United Nations and with support from the Embassy of France in Pakistan, UK Aid and the Karachi Metropolitan Corporation, the exhibition aims to raise awareness of the SDGs and of the efforts needed to achieve

the Goals by 2030. The exhibition was inaugurated by Wasim Akhtar, Mayor Karachi, Amelie Herenstein, Bureau Chief AFP for Pakistan and Afghanistan, Vittorio Cammarota, Director UN Information Centre and François Dall’Orso, French Consul General. Speaking at the event, Wasim Akhtar, Mayor Karachi said the exhibition was a true depiction of Pakistani society. He assured the partners present that the Local Government of Sindh is fully committed to support all future and

ongoing programs of national and international agencies, and is also supportive to fulfill the SDGs agenda in the province. Vittorio Cammarota, Director of the UN Information Centre was honoured to bring the photo exhibition to Karachi, saying it provides people from Sindh with an unprecedented opportunity to expand their knowledge and understanding of the Sustainable Development Goals and development in Pakistan. Adding that promoting the SDGs is a top priority for UN agencies in Pakistan.


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François Dall’Orso, French Counsel General said the Embassy of France in Islamabad is happy to have contributed to the photo exhibition by Agence France-Presse throughout Pakistan, which complies with the general commitment of France to this major international cause. AmÊlie Herenstein, Bureau Chief Agence-France Press for Pakistan and Afghanistan said it was a great honor for AFP Pakistan to present the photos directly to the Pakistani public. She further maintained that they deliberately focused on the human angle of the story, showing the reality of life as it is now for millions of Pakistanis, and documenting their extraordinary resilience in the face of tragic events like floods.

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


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FAO Pakistan welcomes its new Country Representative From 1988 to 1992, she worked as an Economist and Project Manager in the private research institute Society for Applied Mathematics and Economics (SOMEA) on research and development projects in Italy and Sub-Saharan Africa. In 1992, she joined the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) as Associate Economic Affairs Officer in the International Trade and Commodities Division, Geneva, Switzerland. Ms Dowlatchahi joined FAO in 2000 as Programme Planning and Budget Officer in the Office of Programme, Budget and Evaluation (PBE) and was promoted to Senior Strategy, Planning and Budget Officer in 2003. In 2010, she was appointed Chief, Unit for Field Programme and Results based Monitoring in the Technical Cooperation Department (TCD). Ms Mina Dowlatchahi took charge of office as the FAO Representative in Pakistan on May 8, 2017. Upon her arrival, Ms Dowlatchahi said that it was a great honor and joy for her to be appointed. She expressed the hope that the long standing historic relations that FAO enjoys with the government of Pakistan will prove to be an asset in further collaboration. Ms Dowlatchahi, a national of Italy, holds a Master’s Degree in Eco-

nomics from University La Sapienza, Rome, Italy, and a post-graduate Certificate in Intermediate Microeconomics from the London School of Economics and Political Sciences, United Kingdom. Ms Dowlatchahi started her career in 1987 as a Research Associate in the Faculty of Economics, Department of Agriculture Economics, University La Sapienza, Rome, Italy.

Since July 2013, she has served as Deputy Director, Office of Strategy, Planning and Resources Management (OSP). Ms MinĂ Dowlatchahi succeeds Mr Patrick Evans as FAO Representative in Pakistan.


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Investing in Information and communication technologies and quality education to promote lasting peace

Knowledge and information have become transformative dimensions of our existence and are key drivers behind the implementation of all the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). From government to small villages, knowledge and information guides what people do and how they do it. The 2030 Agenda recognizes the need to develop knowledge societies where everyone has opportunities to learn and engage with others, which starkly highlights the need for ac-

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


cess to Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). This is my reading of SDG 9, which calls on states to “build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation.� Yet, in many places, people and communities cannot access computers or the Internet. In the developed world, for example, over 80% of individuals use the Internet; in the developing world, less than 35% do. The remaining 65% are often

poor and remote communities or disenfranchised groups. They may be fragile communities struggling every day to recover from years of conflict. All these communities need access and I believe it is especially true of conflict-affected or post-conflict communities. The vision I implement through my Foundation, the Whitaker Peace & Development Initiative (WPDI) is that connectivity can help vulnerable communities on their path to peace and resilience. Peace is

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best practiced by individuals integrated into thriving communities, and communities thrive when their members exchange among themselves and communicate with those outside. This implies that, today, in this age of social media, peace and connectivity condition each other. Connectivity means that people and communities have the skills, the capacity and the will to interact and engage in respect-driven dialogues, that they can access the resources to do so, and that they have the technology to help bridge physical and cultural distances. A key aspect of the programs I run through WPDI is the establishment of Community Learning Centers (CLCs) in vulnerable communities in South Sudan and Uganda. At the CLCs, young people and community members can access computers and connect to the Internet, as well as take courses in ICTs, literacy, business, conflict resolution and library services. Since 2015, WPDI has established nine CLCs in South Sudan and two in Uganda, with an average of 150 monthly users per center. I expect those numbers to grow as we open more centers and as community people hear from their peers about the CLCs and what they can bring to them. To me, success is when a center becomes a community hub, a place on peoples’ map and from where they know they can conquer the world. This is the reason why ICTs are central to my projects, beyond the CLCs themselves, which are only an aspect of our primary goal of empowering young people to

foster lasting peace and sustainable development in vulnerable communities. We train groups of young people from conflict- and violence-affected communities in conflict resolution, entrepreneurship and ICTs so they can become peace makers and mediators and develop educational and economic projects; we also equip them with technology so they can reach out to each other, form friendships and connections, and brainstorm their responses to crises in real time. The CLCs are part of this architecture where technology and learning are fully imbricated. I see it as obvious that SDG 9— or indeed the whole 2030 Agenda—cannot be attained without massive ICT investments in local populations, especially in remote and vulnerable communities. It is also clear to me that we cannot achieve anything sustainable if we disconnect technology from learning, and this relates particularly to SDG 4 on quality education for all. Multiple issues are at stake here. Firstly, people must learn how to use technology and information in ways appropriate to their needs and aspirations. The relevance of ICTs is not just in access or even in basic command skills: ICTs are truly relevant if they help us innovate in our daily lives. Technological innovation is successful when it supports social innovation. The other aspect of education I see as important is the need to promote civic uses of ICTs. If we misuse the Internet and social media, they can become echo chambers for fake news, hoaxes and hate speech. In other words, our efforts cannot

focus solely on access and technological issues. Quality education is of course about performance, but it is also about the capacity of students to understand their world and to respect other people and cultures. Technology can help us become better people if education teaches that communication must be a means for genuine dialogue. We should always bear in mind that the role of education is to prepare citizens. Forest Whitaker SDG Advocate, an American actor and Special Envoy for Peace and Reconciliation for UNESCO.


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I’m always astounded by the thought that 25% of the world’s population is under the age of 14. It’s terrifying and exciting at the same time. A huge generation of youth and energy is ready to help change our world for the better if we arm them with the knowledge and the tools to do it. And I believe the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Global Goals of this generation, are the perfect toolkit. If we are to create long term sus-

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


tainable change we have to start with the young—and that’s why in my work as a SDG Advocate I’m especially passionate about the World’s Largest Lesson. It’s a simple thought—that if we teach children about the SDGs—from Goal 1 (No Poverty) right though to working together (Goal 17) and remind them of the Goals, year after year, teach it to them like I was taught the lives of the Kings and Queens of England—or the 10 Commandments—then these lessons will

stick and galvanise them into taking action of their own in the name of all the Goals. To achieve it I have worked with some great teachers and education specialists from around the world, including Sir Ken Robinson, to produce films, comics, and lesson plans for teachers to use in schools the world over. And we’ve tried to make it fun and accessible—it’s always a risk that something as ambitious as the SDGs will appear lofty and removed—and the

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UN loves complex language! So we’re trying to rectify that with easy projects that bring the Goals closer to home for children and to involve them by using what’s around them to think about the SDGs. Last year with some wonderful help from Emma Watson we asked children to create their own gender equality ratio—based on the people who influence their lives. We wanted them to stop, think and check whether they are growing up with strong female and male role models in their communities and if they aren’t—to think about what they can do about it and even to become those role models in the future. It was incredible to see gender ratios flooding in from children online and to hear feedback from teachers. One used the project as part of a math lesson and ended up using the real life ratios to have a discussion on the role that gender balance plays in shaping your views as you grow up. She and her students didn’t expect to have that conversation that day, but they will remember it and they will remember the Goals too. I’m hoping this classroom experience will be replicated at HLPF soon—a real commitment to driving change for Goal 5 following review and discussion. This year we are asking children to think about how their food choices impact the SDGs and to pledge to make changes. From healthy eating to reducing wastage, eliminating plastic packaging, sourcing closer to home and checking on the practices of food producers, children will roll up their sleeves and dig into Goals 2, 3, 13, 14, and 15. And not forgetting a call to

them to fearlessly stand up for the children that are hungry right now and need our help. There is still work to be done but the reach of the lesson has been encouraging, largely thanks to the efforts of influential figures and familiar faces. Since September 2015, 43 government ministers have gone to schools—some in EVERY continent—and either given or taken part in a lesson. 58 ministers of education have sent out messages to all the schools in their country encouraging them to take part. These efforts have been echoed by key influencers (including some royalty) on social media whose followers have helped the SDGs’ presence on social media grow daily. Teachers have responded by sharing what they’ve been doing at school on Facebook and Twitter. There are hundreds of photographs showing how amazing and creative teachers can be! None of this would have been possible without the incredible partnership of UNICEF and the support of UNESCO, civil society, and the education community coming together to raise awareness at all levels of the importance of children learning about the Goals. It really has been a team effort (I hope it’s a sign that Goal 17 is rubbing off). But we can’t stop. There are millions of children who don’t know about the SDGs—millions of children who could make a difference. My motto is—“You can’t fight for your rights if you don’t know what they are”— and the young generation has the right to a world without extreme poverty, injustice and the threat of disastrous climate change.

I’m glad to have been able to tell you a bit about my favorite lesson—the World’s Largest Lesson—and can I ask you right now—if you have a child in school, ARE in school, or you know any teacher—then forward this to them! Tell them that there’s a new online training course for them to learn more about the SDGs and teach more about the Goals and make the generation now in school the most important generation EVER. Richard Curtis Member of the SDG Advocacy Group, Screenwriter, Producer and Film Director


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music and intercultural dialogue

World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development Just as natural diversity is vital to sustain ecosystems, cultural diversity is the lifeblood of vibrant societies. Cultural diversity provides fresh ideas and perspectives that enrich our lives in countless ways, allowing us all to grow and thrive together. A culturally diverse classroom is not only more inclusive, it boosts student learning and achievement. A culturally diverse workplace is not only more innovative, it is also more productive and economically profitable. It is an opportunity for us all to celebrate the tremendous benefits of cultural diversity, including humanity’s rich intangible heritage, and to reaffirm our commitment to building a more peaceful world, founded on the values of mutual understanding and intercultural dialogue. With the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the international community has recognized the essential role of culture as a driver of change and development. Achieving the 17 goals will be impossible without drawing upon the strength and creative potential of humanity’s diversity of cultures, without engaging in continuous dialogue to ensure that all members of society benefit from development. Even as we celebrate cultural diversity, we must remember

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that cultural diversity is increasingly under threat. Across the world, violent extremists have targeted cultural minorities and destroyed our shared heritage, to weaken the essential links between people and their history. At another level, unchecked urban development threatens to standardize our cities, depleting their social diversity and identities. Martin Luther King Jr. once said: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny.” In this spirit, I believe that we need a new humanism for the 21st century, to renew the fundamental aspirations to justice, mutual understanding and dignity that guide all women and men. Building on human rights, UNESCO believes that our differences and diversity make us stronger and that respect for cultural diversity is essential for fostering intercultural dialogue, sustainable development and peace. As we work together to make the 2030 Agenda a reality – and to counter the threats to our cultural diversity – let us be guided by the spirit of this day, knowing that by embracing our cultural diversity, we can weave a brighter “garment of destiny” for us all. Irina Bokova Irina Bokova Director-General, UNESCO

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music and intercultural dialogue

Maestro Jun Kanno visits Pakistan to celebrate cultural diversity through music An internationally-acclaimed Japanese pianist, Maestro Jun Kanno, who was invited to Pakistan, participated in several events around the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, jointly organized by the United Nations, the embassies of Austria, Germany and Japan, National Academy for Performing Arts (NAPA) in Karachi and Quaid e Azam University in Islamabad. Jun Kanno, who started his music journey at the age of four in Japan, now lives in Paris and is a graduate from the University of Toho in Tokyo. He has received prizes at several international competitions, and has played with the Munich Symphony Orchestra, the Chamber Orchestra of Berlin, the Chamber Orchestra of Prague, the NHK Symphony Orchestra, the Japan Philharmonic, the Korean National Orchestra and many others. Maestro Kanno regularly performs in London, Rome, Tokyo, Barcelona, Geneva and other major cities of the world. During his visit to Pakistan, he performed in live classical piano concerts at the embassies of Germany and Japan, and at the residence of the Austrian Ambassador in Islamabad. Believing in, and advocating for music as a platform for bringing

people of different cultures together, Mr Kanno participated in a PTV talk show “World this Morning” and in a debate held with the faculty members of the Quaid e Azam University in Islamabad, where he met a young and passionate singer, Qasim Ben Tariq, who performed on his famous song “Malang”. In Karachi, Mr Kanno gave a master class to the students of the music department at the National Academy of the Performing Arts, where students learnt live music tips and techniques and interacted with him. On his concluding and grand concert at NAPA , Kanno mesmerised the audience with his soft piano notes as the choir of NAPA students added another layer to the performance. He also performed on Japanese traditional songs, together with pieces by Beethoven, Mozart, Ifukube and Chopin. Musicians from NAPA performed traditional Pakistani music with sithar and table instruments and

interacted with Maestro Kanno. Ustad Nafees Ahmed Khan, Head of Music Department NAPA said that NAPA has been focusing on fostering tolerance and acceptance in society through music, and was honored to welcome Maestro Jun Kanno at the school. He suggested Kanno’s words set solid foundations for nourishing current and future generations. Vittorio Cammarota, Director, United Nations Information Centre highlighted the fact that music is a language transcending all borders and a powerful means for connecting people from all cultures around the globe, and that the day provides an opportunity to deepen the understanding of the values of cultural diversity and promoting human rights, peace and stability in society. Mr Kanno was very enthusiastic to be in Pakistan and to have presented his music as a symbol of cultural diversity and peace.


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Maestro Jun Kanno What does World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development mean to you as a musician? Cultural diversity exists worldwide, but for me culture is also at the core of life through art. As musicians, we try to connect people through our music. The United Nations has taken a very good initiative for creating and organising events on this very important Day, and I was very happy to participate.

What are your thoughts on your experience in Pakistan? I was honoured to be invited to this beautiful country on this important occasion. I had a chance to visit Taxila, and found it to be very interesting. This is really a point where different cultures meet, I noticed the influence of Greek civilization on Ghandhara art which reached as far as Japan in the 6th and 7th centuries. I felt that this city in Pakistan is a sort of meeting and melting point of culture. My experience of meeting with Pakistani people and performing here was great.

Maestro Jun Kanno A world-renowned pianist and musician

As a globally acclaimed musician, how do you think music can play a role in bridging gaps between countries and nations? Music can definitely bridge gaps. I collaborate a lot with different musicians from all around the world. I am really happy to have met Pakistani musicians this time round. I do play

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music from Japanese composers, but the main core of my repertoire is Western classical music. Through this fusion in music, I can see the world is getting closer and closer.

Do you collaborate with Pakistani musicians? How was your experience performing in Pakistan? It was a wonderful experience to meet and perform with Pakistani musicians and students at the National Academy of Performing Arts in Karachi. I am thrilled to see that people really enjoyed our joint performance on Japanese traditional songs, with a choir of NAPA’s music students, together with pieces by Beethoven, Mozart, Ifukube, and Chopin. I also performed in Islamabad at the embassies of Germany, Austria and Japan, and am happy to see that Pakistani people appreciate the music.

How was your experience performing in front of a Pakistani and mixed audience? I found this to be a very positive experience. I also enjoyed the interest of the Pakistani audience, who reacted very kindly and positively to my performance. This encounter has enchanted me greatly.

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When did you start playing the piano, and how long did it take you to master it? I began to play the piano at the age of four. At first it was not really a piano, but a small harmonium organ, along with other children in my kindergarten class. I liked it a lot, and the teacher noticed that I had a real interest in it and was a fast learner. Many people have asked me how I decided to go down this career path but it was not really a decision, it was destiny for me. I would have also been interested in being a diplomat, but finally I did become a sort of diplomat through music. I’ve found new interests within music and understand much more than when I was young, so I try to practice as much as I can.

Has your family felt the pressure to pick up an instrument? Are they also naturally gifted, or have they tried to stay away from the music scene? My wife and I tried to let our two children learn other instruments, other than the piano, but they both wanted to learn the piano like their father! They later ended up choosing a different path: they didn’t become professional musicians, but nevertheless I think it is important to share the passion. It is a pleasure and an enrichment for everybody.

Were there any ups and downs in your career? Is being a renowned pianist a lot of pressure? I feel the pressure, and also must keep myself in a good shape and have a positive outlook. Not only focusing on the artistic quality of my work that is obviously very important, but having a strong belief in myself, what I am doing and why.


music and intercultural dialogue

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music and intercultural dialogue


Vittorio Cammarota Differences make our lives more interesting, we should not be afraid of them. How boring would it be if we were all the same? We have to work on this, to make sure that we reach an understanding. It begins in our own homes, in our own countries and then spreads to different countries. If we learn to understand other peoples’ cultures, we will no longer be afraid of them. It is important for children to learn how to disagree in a healthy way, there is no need to be afraid of someone who is different because of the of their skin colour, gender, or religion. None of these things are a threat.

Vittorio Cammarota Director, United Nations Information Centre (UNIC)

Please tell us about this idea to intertwine music as a tool for intercultural dialogue?

What is the meaning behind the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development? Cultural diversity is key in achieving peace. Most of the current conflicts present worldwide are caused by a misunderstanding of different cultures. This is why this day was established by the General Assembly, to talk and foster different ways to come together, irrespective of the different parts of the world we come from. We all have different traditions, and belong to different religions, so it is important to find a way to talk to each other and understand one another, but also to be tolerant.

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Arts are a universal language. This time the focus was on music, which is important in Pakistan, but also in many different parts of the world. Maestro Kanno is a pianist who is constantly playing in different countries, in different areas of the world. He is Japanese but is based in Paris, and also has a little base in my own country, Italy. His spectrum is really wide, that is why he seemed a perfect fit for this occasion. This is a joint project together with the embassies of Austria and Germany, and many member states are coming together to support the UN in making sure that we talk in Pakistan

about music as a tool for intercultural dialogue.

How do you feel about Maestro Kanno’s performance? It was great to see how Pakistani audiences were eager to listen to the performance, and how much they interacted with him at the end of the concert. Because of this amazing support and the positive reactions from the audience, we know we are going in the right direction.

Do you think in the future will be able to combine artists from every country and create a cultural fusion album? This can happen and has happened before. Often times we see important singers joining together and producing big hits. One of the reasons for inviting Maestro Kanno to Pakistan is the hope to inspire more young Pakistanis to study music, and have the opportunity to build a career around it. As Maestro Kanno mentioned, it is a combination of natural talent and of what you learn.

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The 19th century American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow said that “Music is the universal language of mankind”. It is a language that we all understand, no matter from which place we come from and what our background and education is. There is, of course, a lot of diversity in music; different genres, different expressions, the East and the West, the classical, the folk, the jazz, the pop, the rock, the blues, the soul, the hip-hop/rap, electronic music and much more. The beauty is, when musicians from different cultures come together, they can converse, not through words, but through music. In Pakistan they like to call it fusion and people love it. We have often seen foreign musicians performing in Pakistan together with local musicians and it always created a special atmosphere of understanding, bonding and joy! In German we have a saying: „Wo man singt, da lass’ dich ruhig nieder, böse Menschen haben keine Lieder“–„Where there is singing you can safely stay, wicked people have no songs.” Many instruments and voices can peacefully play together and create a harmonious whole. Unity in Diversity is the motto of the European Union; it has enriched the continent and made it peaceful. Through interaction, through dialogue new things arise; the diversity is a source of inspiration, an exchange that leads to new ideas, to new thinking. Creativity is a driving force, in culture, but also in politics and economics, it is essential for the development of our globe H.E. Dr. Brigitta Blaha Austrian Ambassador to Pakistan

music and intercultural dialogue

The world around us is full of diversity, yet we tend to be hesitant of accepting anything different from us. However, after trying to accept, and learn something from it, almost always we realise that what we have done is correct. I firmly believe that this is how our culture deepens and society develops. However, it is not always easy to learn other culture, especially when it comes to literature which requires you some knowledge of language. But music is, although deeply rooted in the tradition and culture of a particular country or people, relatively easily enjoyed, and can be a convenient, sometimes powerful, tool for acquainting us with other culture. It is particularly a great pleasure for us, in the process of being acquainted with other culture, to realise that it has something in common with ours. Take Pakistani ‘bansuri’ or Japanese ‘shakuhachi’, for example, both flutes were originated in different parts of the world, but both produce sweet, almost similar, melodies, which I believe is not a coincidence. Hoping to have this kind of pleasure again and again, we would like to continue to organize the music events of different culture in the future as well. H.E. Mr. Takashi KURAI Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to Pakistan


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music and intercultural dialogue

Music an essential human expression of unity in diversity If you try to go to the roots of different cultures and religions you always will find one thing for sure: music! Plato, one of the philosophical pillars of the Greek - and later European culture describes the cosmos as a harmony with different spheres who are neither silent nor chaotic. He was convinced if you had been able to listen to all their noises together you would listen … music! One central book in the Jewish and Christian bible is the so called “psalter” a prayer book with old prayer songs. And some Muslim countries use singing in their schools as a tool or method to memorize the Koran. These examples signal that music is a unifying bond which can bind different cultures. Music can teach us the values of cultural diversity and the richness it can bring to more and more globalized societies because –as the German poet and musician Moses Mendelsohn Bartholdi used to say- : “Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.” Dr. Jens Jokisch Deputy Head of Mission, German Embassy to Pakistan

Music is a very effective tool to bring people together. I have experienced this phenomenon all my life. I have seen people of different cast, skin colour, creed and culture enjoying music from completely different origins, that led me to understand and appreciate the immense capacity music has to connect people with ease. Fortunately, or unfortunately, I indulged myself into learning music at a very young age and in order to support my family, I had to make an early entry into the professional field. Being a resident of twin cities, Rawalpindi and Islamabad, I benefited from numerous opportunities of music collaborations with well-established visiting musicians from different parts of the world who were invited by their respective embassies in Islamabad. My intensive traveling for professional commitments also contributed immensely towards affirming my beliefs about music and unfolded many other aspects of life which music has strong connections with. There was a time when the whole nation was suffering through history’s most difficult time due to the terrorism a time when the country was almost in social and cultural jeopardy. Every Pakistani was presumed to be a security threat to all foreigners. So we, the real Pakistanis, had no source or means to communicate to the world that we were different than the ones wrongly presumed to be Pakistanis. This was the time when National Academy of Performing Arts (NAPA) appeared as a hope. I knew that now the world would respond to this platform as here we had one of the most powerful attractions: performing arts. Initially it was a bit different but gradually we succeeded in involving a few diplomats and as it was mentioned earlier, music worked its magic. All wrong perceptions about the country were changed very quickly. Seeing how fruitful collaborations were, I have initiated a tagline: Bridging Cultures through Music. Now musicians from all over the world come to NAPA, perform together with local Pakistani musicians on the stage, in front of local and foreign audiences. Although, I have known music’s power for many years now, the target is to make others understand that it provides a space where we can understand each other, discover other cultures, which ultimately leads to filling all evil gaps with tolerance, harmony, and peace.

Ustad Nafees Ahmed Khan Head of Music Department, National Academy of Performing Arts, Karachi

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music and intercultural dialogue

Anita role of music in our life, from simple relaxation techniques to soothing those with fatal diseases.

Anita 2nd Year, Vocal Student, Music Department, National Academy of Performing Arts, Karachi

Do you think that music has an impact on our lives? How? Music has a great impact on our lives. From my point of view, it is one of the best exercises for brain growth. It develops optimism in our personalities. People who love music always seem to be more positive than those who do not. Music also reduces the effects of stress and anger that can be harmful for us. Many studies have proved the vital

How can music bridge gaps between diverse cultures, and bring peace and development? Music is a universal language and a force of attraction. It is “spoken” every part of the world in their own way. People from different cultures have demonstrated how this force of attraction brings people together and makes us feel the same way. If people really start respecting diversity the way musicians do, then peace and development will not be a distant goal.

What are the challenges you face, and what kind of support is needed in order to pursue a career in music? The main challenge I face is time management, as I work at the same time, and do not get enough time to practice. If I stop working then I won’t be able to afford learning music because this entails fees, conveyances etc. So it’s a sort of vicious circle. I wish for a career in western music, but the support for this should come mainly from the West. However, at the moment I am getting all the basic learning from my teachers to whom I am very grateful. I believe whatever I am learning from them today will help me in the future in some way.

Can you describe your experience performing with world-renowned pianist Mr. Jun Kanno? It was an amazing experience. He is a wonderful pianist and I found myself lucky to be the part of his performance. The way he engaged with the audience was outstanding. He is also an amazing teacher, as we saw when he helped some of the students during the workshop. It appears he was using a magical wand on the students. I learnt many important things from him which I shall be applying in my own learning.


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music and intercultural dialogue

Nigel Bobby


Haider Chao How can music bridge gaps between diverse cultures, and bring peace and development? I think music is a universal language. It can be one of the best tools to build strong relations and create bridges which can bring people together. They can perform together, exchange their cultures, their languages, their art and many other things, this can foster peace.

How was your experience of performing with a world-renowned pianist Mr. Jun Kanno? I had a great time with Jun Kanno, but wished to have more time with him to learn some more of his techniques. As part of the NAPA choir, it was fun working and singing Japanese songs with him.

Nigel Bobby Alumni, Vocal, Music Department, National Academy of Performing Arts, Karachi

Do you think that music has an impact on our lives? How? Music has had a big impact on my life. I love to spend time playing guitar or doing my vocal exercises. For me it is a type of meditation, because it has a very soothing impact and makes my brain feel relaxed. Music is my profession, so it is a huge part of my life.

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What are the challenges you face, and what kind of support is needed to pursue a career in music? As musicians in Pakistan, we face many challenges. Music is not very supported, and there are very few opportunities to make of music a profession. There are number of other issues and challenges which need to be taken care of, for example, entertainment channels need to be revived so that artists can have a chance to share their music.

Haider Chao 4th Year, Vocal Student, Music Department, National Academy of Performing Arts, Karachi

Do you think that music has an impact on our lives? How? Undoubtedly yes! Music always affects us because it has a profound effect on our mind, soul and body. In this sense, it has a direct link with our lives. For example, music always connects me to my late uncle who always supported me in my music career.

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music and intercultural dialogue

Faisal Masih How can music bridge gaps between diverse cultures, and bring peace and development? Music can help countries with different cultures to understand each other, and appreciate the differences that too often lead to conflict. This is because its essence is not bound to culture, religion or race. For me music is a synonym for peace.

Can you describe your experience performing with world-renowned pianist Mr. Jun Kanno? It was a fantastic experience to perform with a great man with a very humble personality. I am glad that I was a part of the choir he was leading, and hope we can have him in our music school more often to give us more lessons and music workshops.

What are the challenges you face, and what kind of support is needed to pursue a career in music? Being a musician here in Pakistan is difficult, because in this country we have less opportunities of becoming proper musicians after completing our music studies. But these exchange programs can give us a hope to work more on this, and they bring us closer to other countries so we can learn different genres or music as well.

How can music bridge gaps between diverse cultures, and bring peace and development? Diverse cultures have only one way to spread music, or know about each other’s music, by making bridges that keep us all united, and let them grow by using all the facilities of the world.

Faisal Masih 2nd Year, Vocal Student, Music Department, National Academy of Performing Arts, Karachi

Do you think that music has an impact on our lives? How? Music impacts our life through the beautiful colors of sound. Music can be used to enrich our mind, as well as represent a source of income.

Can you describe your experience performing with world-renowned pianist Mr. Jun Kanno? It was an amazing experience to take part in this show, and it was very nice to perform with a world renowned pianist Mr. Jun Kanno. I especially loved singing some beautiful Japanese melodies.

What are the challenges you face, and what kind of support is needed to pursue a career in music? There was no bigger challenge than that of performing in a different language, but as they say, practice makes perfect. I expect these kinds of concert to thrive in the future. This is a great support and a substantial opportunity to further one’s career in


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music and intercultural dialogue

Sajar Nafees bridging gaps between them. For exam-


Areeba Niazi

ple, there are some issues between India and Pakistan which separate them, but some musicians and singers from Pakistan adore singers from India, and they inspire some of our songs. Our music resembles their music. We both have classical and pop as well. Musicians can be of great help in bridging these gaps by working together.

Can you describe your experience performing with world-renowned pianist Mr Jun Kanno?

Sajar Nafees Alumna, Vocal, Music Department, National Academy of Performing Arts, Karachi

Mr. Jun Kanno is a humble and lovely man, on top of being a world-renowned pianist. Working with him was a great experience, he helped us in the pronunciation of Japanese words in one of the Japanese songs we performed with him. We also attended a workshop with him in which he explained the culture behind

Areeba Niazi 3rd year vocal student, Music Department, National Academy of Performing Arts, Karachi

Japanese music, which was very instruDo you think that music has an im-


pact on our lives? How? Music is present in many aspects of our lives: the clock ticks in a rhythm, the steps we take are in a rhythm, we talk in specific tones to some people, with base voices with some and sopranos with others. Besides this, our mood changes according to the music we’re listening to. Pop or rock music can make us feel energetic, while slow music can either relax us or even remind us of some of our memories.

What are the challenges you face, and what kind of support is needed to pursue a career in music? Being a music student, there are a number of challenges that I have to face, probably the biggest is society. The majority of the population does not encourage studying music, especially for girls. Even I, who am a musician’s daughter have had to listen to taunts and disapprovals from many. On top of this, another challenge for me is school. Studying at the same time as

How can music bridge gaps between diverse cultures, and bring peace and development? Although music may not completely bring diverse cultures together, it can help in

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


learning music isn’t an easy task. It needs a lot of time and support, especially that of our parents or guardians, and society in general, which is lacking in this country.

Do you think that music has an impact on our lives? How? Life without music is not worth living. It has a great impact on lives of all human beings. It is relaxing and therapeutic, and has different effects, according to the kind of melody played.

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music and intercultural dialogue

Muhammad Waqas How can music bridge gaps between diverse cultures, and bring peace and development? If we talk about peace and development, nothing can be better than music. An instrument which allows people to get along between different cultures, I think has a power to think positive about each other. This positivity surely helps in getting rid of racism and discrimination.

Can you describe your experience performing with world-renowned pianist Mr. Jun Kanno? It was great to have the opportunity of working with Mr. Jun Kanno. I learned a lot by listening to his music, his stage presence, how he engaged the audience. He felt every note himself while playing the piano.

Muhammad Waqas Can you describe your experience performing with world-renowned pianist Mr. Jun Kanno? Experiencing Japanese music through Mr. Jun Kanno was almost like learning a new language. We were honoured to perform with him. It was difficult at first but we managed with practice. Performing with him was a real pleasure in the concert and everyone appreciated the songs. What are the challenges you face, and what kind of support is needed to pursue a career in music? As Muslims, it is difficult for us to pursue a career in music. Music is appreciated by everyone but our society does not promote it much. Music is not taken seriously as a profession and because of this we cannot access music degrees.

Junior faculty, Tabla, National Academy of Performing Arts, Karachi

What are the challenges you face, and what kind of support is needed to pursue a career in music? We need a lot of appreciation for our music and our artists. There are no music schools or universities, except a conservatoire such as NAPA. We have no financial support to present our music around the world. People generally do not encourage their kids to pursue music as a career.

Do you think that music has an impact on our lives? How? I find that music relieves all types of stress and tension. Music has the power to heal.

How can music bridge gaps between diverse cultures, and bring peace and development? Music is a universal language. It does not abuse or foster hate towards anyone. When different people create music together, music itself helps in understanding each other.


guest in town

UNDP Haoliang Xu visits Pakistan

Mr. Haoliang Xu, the UN Assistant Secretary General and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific came to Pakistan on a four-day visit on 11 June 2017. During this time, Haoliang Xu met key Government counterparts including Mr. Sartaj Aziz, Advisor to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, Mr. Tariq Mahmood Pasha (Secretary) Economic Affairs Division (EAD), Ministry of Finance, Lt. Gen (r) Abdul Quadir Baloch, Minister of States and Frotier Regions, Mr. Zahid Hamid, Minister of Climate Change, and Ms. Tasnim Aslam, Additional Secretary-UN&EC, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other Development Partners including Ms. Xiaohong Yang, Country Director, Asian Development Bank in Islamabad to discuss mutual partnerships and key development issues. Haoliang Xu during his meetings with Government Officials stressed that UNDP does not only want to be a trusted partner but also a service provider and offered help in technical and operational departments for effective implementation. During his visit to Peshawar, Haoliang met officials of the Government

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, including Mr Pervez Khattak, Chief Minister of KPK, and Mr Iqbal Zafar Jhagra, Governor of KPK, to reiterate support for community resilience, rule of law, sustainable return and rehabilitation of FATA’s temporarily displaced people, employment, youth engagement and economic development in order to achieve peaceful sustainable development in KPK and FATA and also inaugurated the command and control centre (CCC) at Peshawar’s Central Police Office together with Salah-ud-Din Khan Mehsud, Inspector General of Police, KPK. The centre monitors security planning and operations. It houses a situation room that communicates with field commanders using secure, real-time audio-visual communication systems,

and a presentation theatre for debriefing purposes. This will enhance Police coordination and decrease response time to public order problems and security threats. Mr. Xu said UNDP reiterates its commitment to partnering with KP province to help build a future of sustainable development and peace for all its people.

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World Press Freedom Day To mark the World Press Freedom Day, UNIC Director Vittorio Cammarota and Asad Baig, who is a former journalist, media rights activist and founder

of the ‘Media Matters for Democracy” participated in an exclusive talk show, “UN Perspective” with the Radio Pakistan on 3 May 2017. They discussed on the issues related to the safety and protection of journalists; freedom of press for advancing peace and justice; role of female

journalists in the media landscape of Pakistan; impunity in crimes against media and the leading factors; use of media economy as a tool for censorship and its far-reaching impacts on information dissemination.

Youth, volunteerism and development Programme Officer of the UN Volunteers programme Md. Aktar Uddin participated in the weekly UN Perspective programme at the Radio Pakistan and talked about youth, volunteerism and development. He said that the volunteerism is widely recognized as a powerful means of transforming the pace and nature of development and draws upon the inherent core val-

ues of self-help, solidarity and social cohesion. Volunteerism fosters a better understanding of the younger generation as an asset to society. He highlighted that youth participation and volunteering are critical for achieving sustainable human development. In Pakistan, the youth group (0-29 years) is now 64% of entire population which is indeed a very substantial number. Md. Aktar Uddin shared that UNV offers good opportunity for youth volunteering (international and na-

tional). Currently 24 Pakistani youth are serving as UN Youth Volunteers.


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“World This Morning” with Maestro Jun Kanno on music and cultural diversity

Globally acclaimed musician and pianist Maestro Jun Kanno, who visited Pakistan to commemorate the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, participated in a PTV talk show, “World This Morning” with the UNIC Director, Vittorio Cammarota, and the Head of Public and Cultural Affairs at the Embassy of Japan, Katsunori Ashida . The discussion evolved around the issues of music as a platform to promote peace and understanding of different cultures, in addition to how music can

connect people from diverse cultures and help bringing peace and development in societies. Jun Kanno was positive in saying that music can definitely bridge gaps. The artist collaborates with a variety of musicians from all around the world, and was enthusiastic to have met Pakistani musicians upon his visit. He explained how in addition to playing music from Japanese composers, the main core

of his repertoire is Western classical music. Through this fusion he is able to witness the world getting closer and closer. The speakers at the talk show all termed music as a powerful language that is understandable by all, and has an ability to bridge gaps and bringing people from diversify cultures closer to each other.

Governance of climate change finance Pakistan ranks 10th in the world in terms of long-term risks due to climate change. It is therefore, essential that the effects of climate change should be taken into account during every aspect of policy and planning. For the first time in Pakistan’s history the process to integrate climate change in planning and budgeting has begun and has made a steady progress. Asad Abbas Maken, Regional Pub-

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lic Finance Expert with the Environment and Climate Change Unit at UNDP while speaking on Governance of Climate Change in Pakistan in the Radio Pakistan’s programme, ”UN Perspectives” explained how UNDP is working with the Government of Pakistan to develop a Climate Change Financing Framework based on the National Climate Change Policy. This framework will focus on including climate change from the planning stage onward and establish a robust system for tracking climate change expenditures –

measures which the Budget in Brief explicitly identifies as reforms which will improve policy implementation and demonstrate Pakistan’s commitment to tackling the effects of climate change.

on air

Water security in Pakistan

Water associated problems are among one of the key development challenges faced by Pakistan. Too little water can mean droughts and food insecurity, whereas, too much water can mean floods and devastation. Goals 6 and 7 of the SDGs directly address water issues. Usman Manzoor, Programme Officer, Environment and Climate Change Unit, UNDP Pakistan and Umer Akhlaq Malik, Policy Analyst, Development Policy Unit at UNDP Pakistan stated that while talking in a panel discussion at the Radio Pakistan’s programme : UN Perspective. They shared that Pakistan’s water profile has changed drastically from being a water abundant country, to one experiencing water stress. The panelists highlighted that addressing water issues requires interventions at individual and state levels, focusing on both the demand and the supply side. Making suggestions for addressing the water security in Pakistan, they said it requires collective working towards increasing public awareness and ways to engage in sustainable development. Some steps to begin on include aligning the academic curricula such that it educates on the subject from an early

age. The panelists further stressed the importance of the creation of a central repository to create awareness.


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Creating awareness on benefits of exclusive breastfeeding Dr. Saba Shuja, Nutrition Officer, UNICEF Pakistan in an exclusive Radio Pakistan live call-in programme “Rabta” (Contact), highlighted the importance of exclusive breastfeeding - starting within the first hour after birth and continuing for at least the first six months – and the importance of colostrum. She also spoke about the disadvantages of bottle feeding and its link to children illnesses. During the live call-in period of the show, several calls were received. Surprisingly, most of the callers were males from rural areas who were keen

to know the advantages of exclusive breastfeeding. Callers suggested that such information should be shared with women in rural communities through awareness campaigns and frequent radio programmes. During the programme, Dr. Saba Shuja also highlighted various initiatives by UNICEF Pakistan in collaboration with provincial Health Departments to

improve the situation around breastfeeding. With support from its partners like the Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation, UNICEF would continue to raise awareness on issues relating to child health and nutrition.

Youth and social cohesion More than 31% of Pakistanis are aged between 15 and 29 years. This ‘youth bulge’ provides unique opportunities for the country’s social and economic uplift whereby the latent potential of young people can be harnessed by providing openings for growth and personal development. Hamza Hasan and Wajiha Khan from UNDP’s Youth Empowerment Programme while speaking to Radio Pakistan on its ‘News and Current Affairs programme’ stated that the country’s economy is still lagging when it comes to producing the millions of quality jobs demanded by a

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rapidly expanding young workforce, young women in particular have low labor force participation rates and experience higher unemployment. UNDP Pakistan has responded to these developments by initiating the Youth Empowerment Programme, a

multi-pronged strategy that aims at creating a facilitating environment for youth in conflict affected areas of Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan to emerge as agents of positive change and development

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Promoting awareness on sustainable technologies in Pakistan UNIDO field office Pakistan was invited by Radio Pakistan to participate in its local language program “Rabta”. The aim was to impart awareness on Renewable Energy (RE) and Energy Efficiency (EE), especially focusing on initiatives taken by UNIDO under its project “Sustainable Energy Initiatives for Industries in Pakistan” Mr. Masroor Ahmed Khan, National Project Manager at UNIDO, was the guest at the program, who provided the brief about UNIDO, its presence in Pakistan, and the themes and objectives on which UNIDO and the project on RE and EE is working on. The audience was also taught about the importance of the renew-

able energy and the energy efficiency for industrial sectors and the positive impacts that these technologies can bring to the daily lives of people. The show was interactive and many live calls were taken, through which people from a variety of backgrounds asked questions and gave their comments. The call-

ers appreciated the hosting of such an informative programme, at the same time this provided the opportunity for UNIDO officials to interact and provide answers to several queries on local issues relating to the subject.


messages from secretary-general

World Press Freedom Day 3 May Journalists go to the most dangerous places to give voice to the voiceless. Media workers suffer character assassination, sexual assault, detention, injuries, and even death. We need leaders to defend a free media. This is crucial to counter prevailing misinformation. And we need everyone to stand for our right to truth. On World Press Freedom Day, I call for an end to all crackdowns against journalists – because a free press advances peace and justice for all. When we protect journalists, their words and pictures can change our world.

Day of Vesak

10 May

I send my warmest wishes to all those celebrating the Day of Vesak in honour of the birth of Lord Buddha. Everyone can draw inspiration from his journey. Born a sheltered prince, Shakyamuni went out into the world to confront and overcome human suffering. As one sutra states, “Because all living beings are subject to illness, I am ill as well.” This message of compassion is timeless. In our interconnected

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world, there can be no peace as long as others are in peril; no security as long as others suffer deprivation; no sustainable future until all members of our human family enjoy their human rights. On this Day of Vesak, let us celebrate the wisdom of Lord Buddha by taking action for others with a strong spirit of solidarity.

International Africa Day 25 May Africa Day 2017 comes at an important moment in the continent’s endeavours towards peace, inclusive economic growth and sustainable development. The international community has entered the second year of implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Africa has adopted its own complementary and ambitious plan: Agenda 2063.

message from secretary-general

The United Nations partnership with Africa is rooted in a deep sense of gratitude. Africa provides the majority of United Nations peacekeepers around the world. African nations are among the world’s largest and most generous hosts of refugees. Africa includes some of the world’s fastest-growing economies.

All of humanity will benefit by listening, learning and working with the people of Africa. It starts with prevention. Our world needs to move from managing crises to preventing them in the first place. We need to break the cycle of responding too late and too little. On this Africa Day, I reaffirm my commitment as a partner, friend and commit-

ted advocate for changing the narrative about this diverse and vital continent. Crises represent at best a partial view. But, from a higher platform of cooperation, we can see the whole picture — one that recognizes the enormous potential and remarkable success stories throughout the African continent.

Secretary-General calls for peace, end to suffering, in message on Ramadan 27 May I send my warmest wishes as Muslims around the world begin the holy month of Ramadan. This is indeed a blessed time, a period of compassion and empathy, a season for reflection and renewal. Islam stresses the promotion of common values, the sharing of knowledge and dialogue, the advancement of social justice and peace.

At this time, my heart is also heavy for those observing Ramadan surrounded by conflict and tragedy. Peace and compassion should be on our minds during Ramadan and every day. This month, as I have done in the past, I will undertake a visit to a Muslim country to share my solidarity with those in need. I join together with everyone observing

Ramadan to call for peace, compassion and an end to suffering. Let us honour the spirit of Islam by working for a world of dignity, safety and equality for all women and men. Let us take inspiration from this glorious month and strive to build a world of peace. Ramadan mubarak.

International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers: investing in peace around the world 29 May

For nearly 70 years, UN peacekeeping has proven to be one of the international community’s most effective investments in peace, security, and prosperity. Demand for UN peacekeepers has risen steadily over the years, and deployment is now near an all-time high. To date, 54 UN peace operations have completed their mandates. Two more, will soon close, joining a long list of successful operations. We are aiming to do more to end operations that have achieved their goals. We are also reforming our peacekeeping missions to improve their effectiveness in the increasingly challenging environments in which they work. Today’s peacekeeping budget is less than one half of one per cent of global

military spending. It is a fraction of the cost of allowing conflict to spread and erode the gains of economic development. The investment is multiplied by the economic growth and prosperity that follow from stability and security after successful peacekeeping missions. The UN is working hard to make all peacekeeping operations cost-effective from start to finish. We are constantly finding ways to reform, restructure and drive costs down. At the same time, UN peacekeepers are relentless in searching for new ways to build sustainable peace. Since taking office earlier this year, I have made ending the scourge of sexual exploitation and abuse committed by UN personnel, including peacekeepers, one of my top priorities. I look forward to working with Member States on this. Our close cooperation is vital if we are to deliver on the promise of lasting peace. I have also prioritized ensuring women playing a more active role in peace operations. Gender parity is essential, and

the presence of women increases the chances of sustained peace while reducing incidences of sexual abuse and exploitation. On this International Day of UN Peacekeepers, we pay tribute to more than 113,000 ‘Blue Helmets’, UN Police and civilian personnel deployed to 16 missions. We acknowledge the contribution made by an ever-growing number of Member States to our operations. We thank more than one million women and men who have served under the UN flag with professionalism, dedication and courage throughout our history. And we honour the memory of more than 3,500 peacekeepers who lost their lives while serving. Their efforts on behalf of the international community are one of the most concrete expressions of the UN Charter’s determination “to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war.” We all owe them a great debt.


messages from secretary general

World Environment Day 5 June

Oceans, Land, Forests, Water, The air that we breathe. This is our environment. It is the keystone of a sustainable future. Without a healthy environment, we cannot end poverty or build prosperity. We all have a role to play in protecting our only home. We can use less plastics. Drive less. Waste less food. And teach each other to care. On World Environment Day – and every day – let us reconnect with nature. Let us cherish the planet that protects us

World Refugee Day World Refugee Day is an expression of solidarity with people who have been uprooted from their homes by war or persecution. I call for a surge in diplomacy for peace to prevent new conflicts from emerging and escalating, and to resolve those that have already had their calamitous impact. I am also appealing to Member States to do far more to protect people fleeing for their lives, and find solutions so that

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20 June

people are not left in limbo for years. It is about sharing a global responsibility, based not only the broad idea of our common humanity but also on the very specific obligations of international law.

World Oceans Day 8 June

On this World Oceans Day, we look to the future. Caring for, and using, our oceans in sustainable ways is critical to achieve ecological and economic goals for communities everywhere. However, the future of our oceans is burdened by numerous threats and the lack of capacities to address these threats. The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is an ambitious framework, which, together, we will use to address these threats and improve people’s lives. The World Oceans Day provides an important opportunity to advocate for a sustainable future and the Implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14: conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development. Looking forward, the conservation and sustainable use of oceans can be achieved only if we manage to address effectively the threats that oceans face. This requires collaboration at all levels and across many sectors. Our future will thus be determined by our collective resolve to share information and find solutions to common problems. By going forward together, we can ensure that our oceans are peaceful, safe and bountiful, and remain healthy as our blue home.

message from secretary-general

International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking 26 June Last year, at the UN General Assembly Special Session on the World Drug Problem (UNGASS), the international community took steps to mobilize a multifaceted, collective response to the full range of issues related to drug abuse and illicit trafficking. Governments came together to chart a new path forward that is more effective and humane, and leaves no one behind. UNGASS

was a ground-breaking moment that provided a detailed and forward-looking blueprint for action. Together, we must honour the unanimous commitments made to reduce drug abuse, illicit trafficking and the harm that drugs cause, and to ensure that our approach promotes equality, human rights, sustainable development, and greater peace and security. Despite the risks and challenges inherent in tackling this global problem, I hope and believe we are on the right

path, and that together we can implement a coordinated, balanced and comprehensive approach that leads to sustainable solutions.


photo album

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


photo album


photo album

United Nations Pakistan | Magazine


photo album


The United Nations Pakistan Newsletter is produced by the United Nations Communications Group

Editor in Chief: Vittorio Cammarota, Director, United Nations Information Centre Sub editor: Chiara Hartmann Producer (photography): Umair Khaliq Producer (content): Ishrat Rizvi Graphic Designer: Mirko Neri Contributors: Qaiser Khan Afridi, Mahira Afzal, Rizwana Asad, Anoushka Boteju, Noman Burki, Priyanka Chowdhury, Douglas T. Coffman, Camila Ferro, Mehr Hassan, Hamza Hasan, Mahwish Humayun, Anita Ilyas, Athar Iqbal, Humera Kareem, Naeem Khalid, Abid Niaz Khan, Imran Khan, Adresh Laghari, Lt Col Hammad Latif, Tahir Liaqat, Abdul Sami Malik, Samia Mani, Waqas Rafique, Ishrat Rizvi, Zikrea Saleh, Ishrat Saleem, Dr Khalid Saeed, Faria Salman, Col Najam Us Saqib, Asif Shahzad, Dr Saba Shuja, Uzaira Tasneem, Maryam Younus.

The United Nations has a long-standing partnership with the people of Pakistan in support of national development goals. The United Nations has also been providing humanitarian assistance in case of natural disasters and crises. Led by the Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator, United Nations works in all eight administrative areas of Pakistan through 19 resident organizations. Straddling humanitarian assistance and sustainable development, the work of the United Nations in Pakistan includes key areas such as education, health, water and sanitation, nutrition, economic growth, employment and livelihoods, resilience against disaster, governance, gender equality and social justice. The One UN Programme for Pakistan, United Nations focuses on accelerating progress towards achievement of Millennium Development Goals, reducing poverty, promoting opportunities for youth as well as advancing gender equality and human rights both at national and sub-national levels. United Nations encourages economic growth in Pakistan through supporting policies and programmes that link small farmers to markets, improving working conditions for women and supporting home-based and domestic workers. It will also assist the Government in strengthening democratic processes and institutions at the federal, provincial and local levels. Tackling the effects of climate change and reducing Pakistan’s vulnerabilities to natural disasters features especially prominently in the work of the United Nations in Pakistan.

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UN Pakistan Magazine - Issue 3 / 2017  
UN Pakistan Magazine - Issue 3 / 2017