Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar on Sunday said Pakistan was a strong voice and a proactive advocate for climate finance for developing countries, adding that the same was acknowledged by the developed world in the United Nations’ 28th Conference of Parties (COP28).
The prime minister is currently in Dubai for COP28. In an interview with Sky News Arabia on the sidelines of the conference, PM Kakar said the formal launch of the loss and damage fund showed developed countries had accepted the argument the world must support countries that were not responsible for climate change.
He said Pakistan had advocated the loss and damage fund at last year’s conference to assist developing countries in facing climate challenges.
“Pakistan has always been advocating that the countries who have not contributed to the carbon emissions but remained one of the worst affected by climate disaster(s) must be compensated in terms of mitigation, climate adaptation and receiving climate finance to address all those challenges,” he said.
He said the operationalisation of the loss and damage fund was a “good start in the right direction”.
Initially, he said the funding should be utilised through multilateral organisations, such as the World Bank, to swiftly initiate the implementation process.
The fund, which remained a key demand of developing nations, was under discussion for nearly 30 years but calls for its immediate establishment gained momentum during the previous COP summit in Egypt. The unprecedented floods in Pakistan last year and the coincidental chairman-ship of the G77 group had allowed developing nations to lobby extensively for the fund.
In establishing the fund on the first day of the two-week COP28 conference, delegates opened the door for governments to announce contributions.
And several did, kicking off a series of small pledges that countries hoped would build throughout the conference to a substantial sum, including $100 million from the hosting United Arab Emirates, at least $5m from Britain, $17.5m from the United States, and $10m from Japan.
Later, the European Union pledged $245.39m, which included $100m pledged by Germany.
Israeli atrocities in Gaza
The premier also talked about Israel’s bombardment of the besieged Gaza Strip in response to the October 7 attack by Hamas.
He said that Pakistan, along with Saudi Arabia and other countries, was at the forefront of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation’s platform in demanding the immediate cessation of “senseless violence and aggression” against the Palestinians and the creation of a humanitarian corridor.
He said that sustainable peace in the region was only possible through a two-state solution of the Palestine issue according to the pre-1967 borders with east Jerusalem as its capital.
Th premier also highlighted that the Kashmir issue remained unresolved for the last seven decades.
“It is an integral part of Pakistan and it needs to be resolved according to the United Nations Security Council resolutions,” he said. He said Pakistan desired “peace and resolution” to the issue but these sentiments needed to be reciprocated by Indian authorities.
On the government’s ongoing deportation drive against unregistered immigrants, PM Kakar said Pakistan was cognisant of its obligations to refugees whom the country had hosted for the last 50 years.
“However, it is our national duty to rationalise and regulate the movement of more than a million undocumented and illegal aliens,” he added.