UNGA prez lauds ‘world pharmacy’ India for helping distant nations during the COVID-19 pandemic

30 August, 2022 | Vaishali Sharma

COVID-19 World

COVID-19: On Monday, UNGA President Abdulla Shahid referred to India as the world’s pharmacy, claiming that New Delhi has reached out to not just neighbouring countries, but also Latin Americ...

COVID-19: On Monday, UNGA President Abdulla Shahid referred to India as the world’s pharmacy, claiming that New Delhi has reached out to not just neighbouring countries, but also Latin America and the Pacific, and has exhibited its human face of compassion.

In an interview with ANI, Shahid, the Foreign Minister of Maldives, who is on a visit to India, said, “India is the world’s pharmacist and has reached out to several countries. I have found that India has reached not only the neighboring countries but also as far as Latin America and the Pacific. India has really shown its human face of compassion.” Moreover, while speaking on the menace of terrorism, he highlighted that “when it comes to terrorism, we have to agree that it has no religion, no creed, and it is pure evil. The world should be able to unite against this.”

Calling out for reforms in UN governance, Shahid on Monday said that the Security Council must reflect the reality of geopolitics of the current world order.

“The IG and the inter-governmental negotiating process for the security council reform have been going on for 14 years. Time and time again I have during this one year, called on the member states to hasten this process because the security council has to be reflective of the current geopolitics of the world, it cannot be a thing of the past because it that happens the credibility of the organ itself will continue to fail.”

This statement is in resonance with India’s call for UN reforms.

At a UNSC briefing on “Maintenance of International Peace and Security: Promote Common Security Through Dialogue and Cooperation”, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ruchira Kamboj noted, “The most urgent thing therefore for us to do is to make the Security Council more representative of developing countries, so as to reflect current geopolitical realities.”

While praising UNGA President and Maldives Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid’s energetic leadership, Vice-President Jagdeep Dhankhar said on Sunday that his visit to India will strengthen India’s multifaceted ties with the Maldives.

On Sunday, Foreign Secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra met with Shahid and discussed furthering India’s relations with the Maldives.

Secretary Kwatra complimented the UNGA President on his ‘Presidency of Hope’ and for his visionary leadership during the UNGA’s 76th session. Notably, the UNGA president introduced the President of the General Assembly’s (PGA) Harnessing Opportunities for Promoting Youth Empowerment Fellowship – the PGA’s Fellowship for HOPE – in November.

The Fellowship hopes to benefit eight young diplomats throughout the course of the 76th session, thanks to the generous assistance of Member States.

Shahid, who arrived in Delhi on Sunday, held a productive visit, meeting and interacted with members of the UN Country Team, to enhance the India-UN relationship.

The UN Country team hosted the UNGA president at the UN House in New Delhi. “Inspiring exchange on his 5 Rays of Hope for unity through turbulence, overcoming Covid and empowering women & youth. Underlined India’s leadership role at all levels for Sustainable Development Goals,” Kwatra said.

Last year, in his address to the opening of the 76th General Debate, Shahid talked about his five rays of hope.

“Vaccinating the world is my top focus. We simply must close the gap on vaccine access,” he said of his first hope.

The second is long-term recovery from the epidemic. Third, he stated that he will handle climate change. The fourth aim for his administration is tied to gender problems, while the fifth is focused on advancing women’s rights and roles internationally.

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