Pakistan calls for promoting harmony, international cooperation as UN marks int’l Day of Nowruz,

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UNITED NATIONS, Mar 21 (APP): A top Pakistani diplomat underscored the need civilizational exchanges that promote harmony and foster international cooperation in a speech to a special ceremony at the United Nations marking the International Year of Nowruz on Tuesday night.
“The positive energy from such exchanges help to influence and shape the course of our collective future,” Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi said at the event where UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and President of the General Assembly, Peter Thomson, also spoke as did the Ambassadors of all the countries where Nauroz is celebrated, including Iran, Turkey, Afghanistan, India and Central Asian Republics..
In her remarks, Ambassador Lodhi pointed out that the idea of Pakistan
was born 77 years ago, in 1940, a day after Nowruz.
She said that this was a specially auspicious time for Pakistan as 70
years of Pakistan’s independence will be commemorated this year. Pakistan, she said, has now seen 70 springs, enjoying the fruits of freedom, growing from strength to strength, playing a key role in international peace and security and taking its rightful place in the international community.
The arrival of spring, which Ambassador Lodhi described as “the
eternal symbol of renewal and regeneration”, has been celebrated in our region for centuries.”It is when the resilience of the human spirit is revitalized, harmony and tolerance are celebrated, forgiveness is practiced, divisions and tensions are removed, and we all become one integral part of an inspiring collective heritage”, she added.
Referring to Nowruz as a symbol of equality, manifested by the equal
length of its day and night, the Pakistani envoy said this was the same spirit of equality on which the United Nations was founded.
“This should guide our engagement at a moment when we are all striving
to make this organization more democratic, based on the Charter principle of sovereign equality”, she said.
A couplet by Pakistan’s national poet resounded in the hall of the
Trusteeship chamber when Ambassador Lodhi cited Allama Mohammed Iqbal on the coming of Spring.
She also told the august gathering that at the 13th Summit of the 10
member Economic Cooperation Organization, which Pakistan hosted in Islamabad recently, the Heads of State and Government discussed connectivity and regional prosperity and also emphasized the important role played by strong cultural ties.
She said, “The Islamabad Declaration also reiterated that the
International Day of Nowruz remained a welcome factor that contributes to the strengthening of friendship between our nations”.
Over the last couple of years, she said, the world body has collectively
set ambitious goals for ourselves, and added, “From our determination to build sustainable peace, combat climate change, promote gender equality to successfully implementing the sustainable development agenda, we have embarked upon an enterprise to make the world a better and a safer place for succeeding generations”.
Ambassador Lodhi concluded her remarks with the words of Allama Mohammed Iqbal: “Spring clouds have pitched their tents over mountains and plains, Look! Flowers are flourishing in gardens and meadows”.
And with that, she added, comes hope and the prospect of a brighter
future.
At the close of the ceremony, video clips were screened from all the
countries where Nowruz is celebrated every year. An impactful video from Pakistan was also shown to the large gathering at the event depicting the arrival of Spring, celebration of Basant and Nowruz.
Nowruz, which marks the first day of spring and the renewal of nature,
is celebrated by more than 300 million people all around the world and has been celebrated for over 3,000 years in the Balkans, the Black Sea Basin, the Caucasus, Central Asia, the Middle East and other regions.
In 2009, Nowruz was inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of
Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity as a festivity of rich diversity promoting peace and solidarity across regions and generations. The following year, the UN General Assembly welcomed its inclusion on the List.