Friday, January 27, 2023

Pakistan’s first blind diplomat wins praises for UNGA speech

Saima Saleem is Pakistan’s first blind diplomat to address UNGA

Saima Saleem, counselor at the Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the United Nations, is the first Pakistani blind diplomat to address the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

The video shared by the Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the UN showed Saima Saleem reading her speech written in Braille during a UNGA session on Saturday.

Her speech came in response to an Indian delegate who said Pakistan plays the ‘victim’ of terrorism and spoke at length about Pakistan’s link to terrorism.

In her powerful speech, Salem reiterating Pakistan’s position in support of the UN-guaranteed right to self-determination of the Kashmiri people.

“India remains in occupation of an internationally recognized disputed territory whose final disposition needs to be decided in accordance with the democratic principle of a free and impartial plebiscite under UN auspices, as provided for under numerous resolutions of the Security Council” Saima Saleem explained.

She spoke at length about ‘state terrorism’ of India to suppress Kashmiris in the occupied valley, India funding terrorist organizations such as Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) against Pakistan, and highlighted the Doval doctrine and India’s covert operations against Pakistan exposed by the capture of Indian spy Kulbushan Jadhav.

She concluded her response by bringing to attention India’s supremacist ideology of promoting Islamophobia.

Saima Saleem asked the UN to hold India accountable for its crimes against humanity.

Her speech received appreciation from different circles in Pakistan.

President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi said that it was not only him but the whole nation is very proud of Saima Saleem.

Parliamentary Secretary for Law and Justice Maleeka Bokhari said that “Women of Pakistan making us all very proud as they are breaking barriers and setting new standards of excellence.”

Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Munir Akram, congratulated Saima Saleem for successfully putting forward Pakistan’s position by exercising the right of reply.

Saima said she was grateful for all the love and appreciation. In 2008, she became the first blind civil servant of Pakistan.

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