Making her debut at the United Nations on Friday, Pakistan’s new Ambassador to the United Nations, Dr Maleeha Lodhi called for addressing the underlying factors responsible for terrorism so as to formulate an effective and comprehensive response.
Among the diverse and complex drivers of terrorism was political, economic and social injustice, lack of social and economic opportunities, unresolved political disputes and foreign occupation, she told a global counter-terrorism meeting.
There was need to evolve a multifaceted response to a multidimensional challenge, the Pakistani envoy said, adding that specific solutions were needed for specific challenges and situations. “One size often did not fit all,” she added.
An effective response to combat terrorism required at the very outset, developing a greater understanding of various terrorist movements, their specific motivations, objectives, capacities and modus operandi, she pointed out. An comprehensive response could not be built without such knowledge, the Pakistani envoy stressed.
Ambassador Lodhi also called for developing recommendations and a plan of action at the global level to counter the narratives and extremist ideologies espoused by terrorist groups, especially among populations and regions under threat from particular terrorist groups.
She also underscored the need to evolve proposals on ways to halt various forms of terrorist financing, including criminal activities and drug trafficking. The international community should address as sensitively as possible the so far ignored problem of state terrorism and state-sponsored terrorism.
Appreciating UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for focusing on all four pillars of the UN Global Counter Terrorism Strategy, she said in implementing these pillars, a balanced approach was needed.
The envoy said Pakistan particularly supported the UN’s focus on capacity building for member states and regional organisations. It remained important, she said, for states to take the initiative in this regard in identifying their specific needs.
On the issue of mainstreaming counter-terrorism in the work of UN peacekeeping operations, which is being advocated by some nations at the UN, she voiced Pakistan’s apprehensions in this regard, saying this issue required greater deliberation and discussion before it can be accepted by all countries.
Ambassador Lodhi assumed her new responsibilities just over a week ago and since then has been engaged in a range of activity at the UN, where other Permanent Representatives have been welcoming her. She is expected to present her credentials to the Secretary-General next week.