Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani said that Pakistan has been at the forefront of global struggle for securing peace and harmony in the world and has rendered immense sacrifices both in human and economic terms.
The cumulative loss incurred by the national economy as a result of Pakistan’s frontline role in the war on terror exceeds $ 68 billion, while more than 35, 000 personnel of security forces and people have sacrificed their lives for global peace.
No other nation can match Pakistan on this count, said the Prime Minister in his message on the occasion of International Day of Peace being observed on September 21.
He said the establishment of peace on sustainable basis is possible by addressing people’s rightful and legitimate concerns and restoring their rights.
This is where the United Nations has a key role to play in bringing elusive peace to the globe as the world body was formed to prevent and resolve international conflicts through building of bridges, the Prime Minister said.
“I am of the considered opinion that democracy and peace are intertwined and there can be no peace if there is no democracy. Democracy in its essence is inclusive and participatory.
Democracy provides an environment whereby holders of different beliefs and ideologies can sit together and reach consensus through dialogue and accommodation,” the Prime Minister said.
Celebrating this day today, the Prime Minister said, “We must endeavour to strengthen democratic system in the country.” He called upon people,communities, intelligentsia, and civil society activists to hold seminars and workshops to spread awareness about peace and democracy.
He said the observance of International Day of Peace around the globe under the banner of the United Nations highlights the importance of peace for socio-economic development of humanity. He said the UN General Assembly under its resolution 55/282 declared to observe the Day globally on September 21 through a unanimous vote.
It draws our attention to the extraordinary services and contributions of individuals and organizations for the maintenance of peace and harmony in the world, he said.
The theme of this day on its 30th anniversary i.e. “Peace and democracy:
make your voice heard”, is most relevant and reflects the imperatives of modern-day world, he added.
The presence of conflicts and wars in the world cripples humanity’s march towards progress and development, the Prime Minister said and added they also undermine the moral wellbeing of people.
Chaos, violence, strife and bloodshed are the outcome of radicalized mindsets that seek to impose their narrow-minded agendas on peaceful majorities, the Prime Minister said.
He said the world peace today is threatened by a combination of religious extremism and denial of political and democratic rights by the authoritarian regimes.