UNITED NATIONS – United Nations General Assembly President, Maria Fernanda Espinosa arrives in Pakistan on Friday for her first trip to any Asian country since assuming the senior UN position, a visit that she said would strengthen the world body’s ties with Islamabad in promoting multilateralism.
The first visit by a General Assembly president in over 8 years will involve engagements on a range of issues that are among the priorities of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s government.
On the eve of her departure for Islamabad, the 193-member Assembly president said that Pakistan plays an “important role in strengthening multilateralism and to contributing to (UN) peacekeeping operations.”
Espinosa said she looks forward to strengthening the ties between Pakistan and the UN, promoting multilateralism and continuing her work with Pakistan on the priorities for the 73rd session of the General Assembly.
She thanked the Pakistan government for the invitation to visit the country.
Meanwhile, Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN, Maleeha Lodhi, flew to London Wednesday on her way to Islamabad to be on hand for the Assembly president’s five-day visit.
The Assembly president is scheduled to meet President Dr. Arif Alvi, Prime Minister Imran Khan, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi as well as representatives of the civil society and the UN.
In the course of her talks with the Pakistani leadership, Ms. Espinosa will be briefed on the deteriorating situation in Indian occupied Kashmir.
Before leaving New York, Ambassador Lodhi said that the General Assembly president’s visit marks the enhanced engagement between Pakistan and the UN and can be expected to take to an even more intense level.