UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan on Monday condemned India’s ‘obstructionist actions’ and ‘hatred’ for the country as New Delhi once again blocked its effort to participate in a UN Security Council (UNSC) debate on the Afghan situation.
India, the council’s current president, however, allowed the ambassador of the Ashraf Ghani government to address the emergency session. Pakistan and Afghanistan had both submitted their requests under UNSC rule 37, which allows a non-member to address the council. Both are not members of the current council, which has five permanent and ten non-permanent members. Earlier, India had blocked Iran as well.
On Monday morning, Pakistan submitted a written request under UNSC rule 37 – its second this month – to participate in the emergency session. India turned down the request. Although other members are also consulted, the president makes the final decision.
The Indian denial “is most regrettable”, said Pakistan’s permanent representative at the UN Munir Akram while addressing a news briefing in New York. “We believe that Pakistan has an important contribution to make at this important and vital juncture in the destiny of Afghanistan.” India, however, used the same rule to allow Afghanistan, which is currently not in the 15-member council, but stopped Iran and Pakistan.
“India’s partisan and obstructionist actions are an illustration of its hatred for Pakistan,” Ambassador Akram said. “They plan to continue the conflict in Afghanistan and to continue the sponsorship of terrorism against Pakistan from Afghanistan.”
Afghanistan’s UN ambassador, Ghulam M. Isaczai, spoke of the fear that has gripped Kabul and other Afghan cities. “Kabul residents are reporting that the Taliban have already started house to house searches in some neighborhoods in Kabul, registering names and looking for people in their target list,” he said. “There are already reports of target killings and looting in the city.”
Pakistan’s UN envoy noted that Ambassador Isaczai was an esteemed colleague “but the person who appointed him has fled Afghanistan”. Therefore, “it is unclear on whose behalf he participated in the Security Council”, he added. Ambassador Akram said if Pakistan had spoken in the council, “we would have also informed it of our efforts to facilitate the safe evacuation of diplomats, representatives of international organisations, and others from Afghanistan”.
Pakistan, he said, had always believed that there’s no military solution to the Afghan conflict and “is making active efforts to promote an inclusive political settlement in Afghanistan”.
Published in Dawn, August 17th, 2021