Thursday, June 21, 2018

H.E. Zahir Tanin

H.E. Zahir Tanin at the 111th Plenary meeting of the GA 64th session: Strengthening of the coordination of humanitarian and disaster relief assistance of the United Nations

General Assembly Plenary on the humanitarian situation resulting from the floods in Pakistan

Statement of H.E. Ambassador Zahir Tanin

General Assembly

Plenary on the humanitarian situation resulting from the floods in Pakistan

Mr. President,


Ladies and gentlemen,

I would like to convey the deepest condolences of the Government and people of Afghanistan to the government and people of Pakistan, our neighbors, for their losses during this tragedy, and our full solidarity with them as they recover and rebuild in the coming months and years.

The United Nations as an Organization reminds us constantly that we do not exist in isolation; more than ever we share the joy and pain of our fellow men. I want to assure the Pakistani people that they are not alone in this struggle; that the international community, and this great Organization, including Afghanistan, are here to assist them. Afghanistan and Pakistan share a long border, common languages, religion, culture, and history, and we feel closely the pain and anguish of our brothers and sisters in Pakistan during this tragedy.

Mr. President,

In this regard, I would like to welcome the draft resolution tabled today, and encourage the international community to give generously in order to minimize the suffering of the Pakistani people and speed the recovery process. Afghanistan has already pledged $1mil in aid, despite our own difficult situation, and has sent four helicopters and more than 4 tonnes of medical supplies, along with 48 medical and humanitarian personnel. The international presence in Afghanistan, both ISAF and UNAMA, have also leapt to assist the Pakistani people, both directly and by funneling aid from outside. We will continue to work closely with our brothers and sisters in Pakistan to offer them a helping hand and a shoulder to lean on during this difficult time.

Thousands of Afghan refugees in Pakistan are also among those suffering, as three refugee camps have been largely destroyed, affecting more than 3000 families. Our Consul General in Peshawar has already distributed a thousand blankets, and is working closely with UNHCR to ensure that these families are cared for.

Mr. President,

None of us can be disinterested in the face of such destruction. More than fourteen million people have lost their homes, their livelihoods, and in many cases their lives. We have a common responsibility, as human beings, to come together and assist the government and people of Pakistan however we can, so that this disaster will not result in further tragedy. It is our hope that the international community will demonstrate its solidarity with the people and government of Pakistan by responding promptly and generously to any request from Pakistan for assistance in their plight.

Again, I reiterate to the Pakistani people and government the full support of my own government and people, and we will assist you further through all available channels.

I thank you, Mr. President.

Ambassador Tanin Briefs JCMB Countries on Preparations for Parliamentary Elections

H.E. Dr. Zahir Tanin, Ambassador Permanent Representative to the United Nations, yesterday joined the Assistant Secretary General for Peace-keeping Operations, Mr. Atul Khare, in briefing members of the Joint Coordinating and Monitoring Board (JCMB) on preparations for Afghanistan’s up-coming parliamentary elections, which will take place on the 20th of September 2010.

In his opening remarks, Ambassador Tanin noted that the successful holding of free, fair and transparent elections were among the top priorities of the Afghan government. In that regard, he asserted the preparations for the polls were well on track, with candidate and voter registration already concluded.

He said Afghan national security institutions – the Afghan national army, police and intelligence services – were working in close collaboration to ensure the elections are conducted in an atmosphere of security. Nevertheless, he asserted that the prevailing security situation in the country remained a challenge and that under such circumstances, “a perfect election process should not be expected.”

Ambassador Tanin, however, underscored that Afghanistan’s expectation was that the elections would see remarkable improvements in terms of “transparency and credibility,” and “mark a milestone in the consolidation of Afghanistan’s democracy.”

On his part Assistant Secretary General Khare said all ballot papers and relevant material had arrived in Afghanistan. He also stated of the total number of registered voters, 376,000 were new voters, who did not take part in Afghanistan’s first parliamentary elections of September 2005. Forty percent of the new-registered voters were women.

He also alluded to the assessment of the Afghan national security forces of the security situation in various provinces, which led to the decision to close 797 polling centers which – owing to insecurity – were “declared not fit to be open” on the day of elections. In that regard, he also underscored the need for a “realistic perception of the election process,” noting that incidents of irregularity should be expected. He also said that the final list of all polling stations which will open on the day of elections will be available on the 18h of August.

Nevertheless, the Assistant Secretary General noted that the Afghan government and the UN were fully committed to ensuring a successful election process. He also called on the international community to contribute in that effort by dispatching elections monitors.

Permanent Mission of Afghanistan