ISLAMABAD, Feb 21 (Alliance News): Executive Director of United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), Catherine Russell on Monday acknowledged Pakistan’s efforts for realization of child rights and the progress towards achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
In a meeting with Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi here at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, she appreciated the response of the Government of Pakistan in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The UNICEF official, who is on her maiden foreign visit after assuming office, affirmed continued collaboration with Pakistan on ensuring child rights and sustainable development agenda in line with the government’s priorities and UNICEF’s mandate.
She also expressed gratitude for Pakistan’s support to UNICEF in facilitating its humanitarian operations in Afghanistan.
FM Qureshi congratulated Ms. Russell on her appointment and expressed the hope that collaboration between Pakistan and UNICEF would further strengthen during her tenure.
He outlined the government’s commitment to the promotion and protection of the rights of children and recalled the proactive role played by Pakistan internationally in furthering this cause.
The foreign minister appreciated the vital work being carried out by UNICEF, both globally and in Pakistan, for the realization of UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) especially those related to children.
He shared the steps taken domestically to strengthen the protection and welfare framework for women and children in the country such as the Ehsaas program and Naya Pakistan Qaumi Sehat Card.
He highlighted that Pakistan’s COVID-19 response was fully inclusive covering its citizens and refugees alike.
Qureshi emphasized that despite progress over the years, children remained vulnerable across the globe particularly in places of protracted conflicts and foreign occupation such as in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).