UNITED NATIONS, Sep 18 (APP):The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) represent the future for millions of girls who want education, women who struggle for equality, and youth fighting for clean air, UN Messenger of Peace Malala Yousafzai said on Friday, at a side event of the General Assembly, urging countries to get on track.
“When I last spoke here, I was just about to enter university…optimistic about what was ahead: university life, making new friends and access to an incredible education,” she told the inaugural SDG Moment event, intended to renew the effort to meet the ambitious Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) over the coming decade. “This June, I graduated in the midst of a reeling world — one many of us could not have predicted.”
The young Nobel Laureate recalled that five years ago member states signed on to the SDGs, but, “so far, you have not kept up with your work”, she declared.
While acknowledging that COVID-19 had been “a striking setback to our collective goals” she stressed, “it cannot be an excuse.”
“On education alone, 20 million more girls may never go back to the classroom when this crisis ends [and] the global education funding gap has already increased to 200 billion dollars per year,” she flagged.
The young advocate signaled that moving forward, things should not return to the way they were.
“When will you commit the necessary funding to give every child 12 years of quality education? When will you prioritize peace and protect refugees? When will you pass policies to cut carbon emissions?”
Underlining the need for “a profound commitment to the way the world should be – a place where every girl can learn and lead, a place where we put people and our planet ahead of profits, a place where leaders keep their promises,” Malala requested that those gathered “set the norms” of a new sustainable, healthy, educated and equitable era.
Meanwhile, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres noted that in embarking on a Decade of Action to deliver the SDGs by 2030, “we must strike out for a world of dignity and opportunity for all on a healthy planet.
“We must look beyond the current crisis and set our sights high…to show that transformation is possible and is happening right now,” he said.
The UN chief painted a vivid picture of a world “shaken to the core” – by the COVID-19 pandemic “pushing us towards the worst recession in decades”, causing widespread disruption, rising hunger, skyrocketing debt, plunging fiscal resources and threatening children’s education.
Even before the virus, inequalities were growing, he pointed out, noting that globalization benefits had failed to reach “millions upon millions of destitute people” as greenhouse gases soared to record levels.
“We need a path that brings health to all, revives economies, brings people in from the margins of society and builds long-term resilience, sustainability, opportunity and peace,” outlined the UN chief.
He said the pandemic has undercut the very fragilities that the 2030 Agenda was designed to address – to end poverty and leave no one behind.
“The poor have a special claim on our efforts and energies and must be reached first” by expanding social protections, ensuring universal access to essential services, strengthening education, health systems and internet connectivity and placing women at the centre of decision-making, he detailed.
According to Guterres, the 2030 Agenda additionally demanded transitioning to inclusive, low-carbon, resilient economies that deliver more jobs and a cleaner environment, which will not only reduce the risk of future pandemics but also mitigate the worst effects of climate change.
“In short, the 2030 Agenda provides the guiding light we need to end the pandemic, to respond to its socio-economic impacts and to chart a course for a transformative recovery”, he spelled out.
Underscoring that there was “no time to procrastinate”, the UN chief highlighted the three crucial areas of finance, COVID-19 recovery and greater ambition, moving forward.
On finance, he stressed the importance of addressing the immediate, medium and longer-term challenges faced by developing countries and pointed to an upcoming UN financing meeting on September 29 as “an opportunity to get behind the most significant policy options”, such as extending the Debt Service Suspension Initiative to at least the end of 2021.
Turning to COVID-19 recovery, Guterres asserted that plans must be inclusive and green to help countries transition to a more equitable and sustainable economy, including by using taxpayer’s money for a resilient recovery, ending fossil fuel subsidies and placing women at the centre of building back.
On the third priority, the UN chief argued that the world needed “ambition and solidarity” to provide the billions of dollars needed to deliver COVID-19 vaccines and treatments to everyone; cut carbon emissions in half; and protect biodiversity, achieve gender equality and fulfill the SDGs’ promises.
“When the public appetite for change is matched with political will and smart policy choices, rapid progress is unstoppable”, the Secretary-General said. “This annual SDG Moment is our opportunity to demonstrate that, as one united family of nations, we have what it takes to eradicate poverty and hunger, tackle climate change, deliver gender equality and achieve all 17 global goals.”
President of the General Assembly Volkan Bozkir noted that the world needed “collaboration, cooperation and dialogue”, saying it was the kind of crux moment, for which the UN was built.
“Halting the spread of COVID-19 and regaining progress against the SDGs must be our collective priority”, he said, arguing that countries in special situations should be prioritized.
“It will not be easy, but the SDGs themselves provide us the very blueprint needed to recover, better.”
The head of the UN Development Fund (UNDP) Achim Steiner said for the first time in 30 years, the march of progress in human development was expected to go sharply into reverse, maintaining that social protection solutions were key to protect communities worldwide.
“Building people’s resilience against vulnerability, risk and deprivation, and helping them to get on their feet if they falter, defines social protection in the 21st century,” he said.
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ISLAMABAD, Sep 18 (APP):National Assembly Deputy Speaker Qasim Khan Suri on Friday said the government was taking numerous steps to resolve issues of the trader community on priority basis.
Speaking after administering oath to the Fruit Mandi Traders Welfare Association here, he said after the passage of legislation related to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), exports of the country will increase.
He said the incentives given by Prime Minister Imran Khan for the construction sector will boost economic and commercial activities in the country.
Pakistan overcame the coronavirus issue and the world appreciated its strategy to counter the virus, he added.
Suri assured the traders that he would direct the Capital Administration Authority to resolve their issues as early as possible.
CHITRAL: The counsel for ChitralToday on Friday filed a new list of three witnesses to court in a defamation case filed against it by a man from Mogh village of Garam Chashma.
The counsel, Afzal Nagin Advocate, moved an application in the court of the additional district judge Lower Chitral along with names of three proposed witnesses after Zohran Shah submitted a handwritten resignation letter to the court last month.
The counsel also submitted, along the application, attested documents obtained by this online newspaper from Darul Qaza Swat showing that Zohran Shah had filed a petition in the high court against his sacking by Aga Khan Education Service (AKES). However, the petition was dismissed by Darul Qaza.
While he had himself submitted his termination letter in Darul Qaza along with his petition No 143/2011, in the session court Chitral he filed the handwritten resignation letter after purportedly getting it verified from the AKES Chitral, claiming he had resigned due to personal reasons and was never sacked.
The defence counsel wants to get it confirmed from the officials concerned at the AKES Chitral whether or not they had verified the handwritten resignation letter submitted to the court.
Zohran Shah filed the defamation case against ChitralToday over a news story about a protest held in Mastuj in early 2014.
The protesters said Zohran Shah had been sacked in 2009 but he was still (in 2014) calling the shots in the AKES and was behind the closure of two schools in their area.
Turkmenistan assures Pakistan to address concerns about TAPI gas pipeline’s commercial, legal aspects
ISLAMABAD, Sep 18 (APP): Pakistan and Turkmenistan on Friday held a detailed discussion and reviewed progress achieved so far on the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India (TAPI) gas pipeline project.
Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Petroleum Nadeem Babar led the discussion with the Turkmenistan delegation, which was headed by Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Directors of TPCL (TAPI Pipeline Company Limited) on TAPI Muhammetmyrat Amanov. Turkmen Ambassador to Pakistan Atadjan Movlamov also attended the meeting, a news release said.APP40-18
ISLAMABAD; September 18 – Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Petroleum, Nadeem Babar leading a discussion with Turkmenistan delegation headed by Muhammetmyrat Amanov, CEO TPCL (Tapi Pipeline Company Limited) on Tapi at Petroleum Division. Atadjan Movlamov, Ambassador of Turkmenistan and senior officers of government of Pakistan also attending the meeting. APP
The Secretary Petroleum, Managing Director Inter State Gas Systems (Pvt) Ltd., other high officials from the Ministries of Energy (Petroleum Division), Foreign Affairs, Law & Justice, Finance and office of Attorney General of Pakistan also participated in the meeting.
The meeting reviewed progress on the project and expressed satisfaction over its pace despite the challenging coronavirus (COVID-19) situation.
The Turkmen delegation informed that it intended to start construction activities in Afghanistan by building the gas pipeline from Turkmen-Afghan border to Herat Off-take point in Afghanistan.
The commencement of construction work in Afghanistan would immensely boost the confidence of international investors to invest in the project.
nPakistan is keenly interested in re-building international standard gas infrastructure in Afghanistan and extending full support at every level to commence such development activities in Afghanistan.
The two sides also discussed Pakistan’s concerns pertaining to commercial and legal aspects of the project. The Turkmen side assured that Pakistan’s concerns would be adequately addressed in the relevant agreements, and negotiations would start as soon as the COVID-19 virus is contained globally.
The Pakistan side expressed its readiness to finalize the matter in order to proceed to actual construction work in Pakistan in parallel with Afghanistan.
The two sides also agreed to finalize the Host Government Agreement by the end of this year.
The Turkmen delegation informed that its negotiations with international lending agencies and Export Credit Agencies were going well.
Pakistan informed that it would like to perform the TAPI’s groundbreaking in Pakistan at the earliest after the finalization of the pending issues.
Turkmenistan appreciated the support extended by Pakistani authorities for timely and fast implementation of the project, expressing the resolve to complete the TAPI gas pipeline with mutual cooperation.
ISLAMABAD: September 18 – Prime Minister Imran Khan chairing a meeting regarding revival of Cinema Industry of Pakistan. APP
RAWALPINDI: September 18 Vendors displaying different kind of sunglasses to attract the customers on their roadside setup at Murree Road. APP photo by Abid Zia
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RAWALPINDI: September 18 A street vendor displaying footwear to attract the customers on his push cart at Moti Mahal. APP photo by Abid Zia
RAWALPINDI: September 18 A worker painting the delivery vans fences at his workplace at Pirwadhai area. APP photo by Abid Zia
RAWALPINDI: September 18 People walking on the rail tracks as a railway engine approaching on the same tracks may cause any mishap and needs the attention of concerned authorities. APP photo by Abid Zia
The post RAWALPINDI: September 18 People walking on the rail tracks as a railway engine approaching on the same tracks may cause any mishap and needs the attention of concerned authorities. APP photo by Abid Zia appeared first on Associated Press Of Pakistan.
RAWALPINDI: September 18 A street vendor displaying toy shaped balloons to attract the customers on his cycle. APP photo by Abid Zia
ISLAMABAD: September 18 Speaker National Asad Qaiser presiding over 3rd meeting of Executive Committee of Pak-Afghan Parliamentary Friendship Group at Parliament House. APP
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ISLAMABAD: September 18 – Punjab Minister for Housing Mian Mahmood ur Rashid called on Prime Minister Imran Khan. APP
ISLAMABAD: September 18 – Prime Minister Imran Khan chairing a meeting regarding reforms in the power sector. APP
ISLAMABAD: September 18 A person catching the fishes in a traditional way at Korang Nullah. APP photo by Saleem Rana
ISLAMABAD: September 18 Despite the warning board displayed a group of youngster sitting in the middle of Margallah rail tracks. APP photo by Saleem Rana
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SIALKOT: September 18 – A worker preparing thread in a traditional way at his workplace. APP Photo by Munir Butt
SIALKOT: September 18 – A worker preparing cloth in a traditional way at his workplace. APP Photo by Munir Butt
LAHORE: September 18 – A farmer spraying anti-pesticide on the rice crop in his field. APP Photo by Mustafa Lashari