ISLAMABAD, Sep 17 (APP):Expressing concern over the global decline in peace index and the impact of deterioration of peace on global economy, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC) General Zubair Mahmood Hayat on Monday asked the world powers to focus on the unresolved Kashmir issue.
“In South Asia due to the volatile nature of Line of Control and Working Boundary and the unresolved Kashmir issue the whole global powers should be focused on conflict resolution,” he said while addressing the inaugural session of a two-day “International Conference on Global Peace Amidst War and Conflict” as chief guest.
The conference has been organized by Center for Peace, Security and Development (CPSD).
The CJCSC said at places like Syria, Palestine and Kashmir life was on hold for their people. The unresolved and frozen conflicts tended to affect the neighbouring countries.
“As a military man I say that military solutions to conflicts are never enduring. There is a need for political solutions for enduring peace to prevail.
“To defuse the growing tension and threat of military conflict there is a need to have arms control agreement between various stakeholders,” he added.
He said in Afghanistan, reconciliation and peace must be supported by all for its desired objectives. “We need to cut binding issues. Our quest for peace must be based on equality for mankind and we should find peace with pluralistic and peaceful means,” he added.
Gen Zubair said there was a need to find peace with pluralistic and peaceful means amid the consistently rising alarming and disturbing world military expenditure, particularly in Pakistan’s neighbourhood.
Stressing the need to give “cooperation over competition” a priority, he said: “We need to revitalize common values,” in the backdrop of world’s failure to limit conflicts arising from disillusionment in particular, and non-contiguous powers in promoting regional hegemons.
In a strategic environment of unshielded rising violent extremism where terrorism dominates the scene, the CJCSC recommended reexamining of the narratives, old camp model, and that advocacy be grounded in reality.
He said peace was an idealistic notion adding that it was a cessation of war and negation of violence. He, however, said mere absence of war was not peace as it (peace) was more dynamic and long term process based on universal values. He said by nature humans were non-violent and hence lasting peace in its absolute form was attainable.
He underlined the need to give preference to conflict resolution and cooperation for enhancing trust and confidence among states, especially those who are weak and small. He said conflicts pertained to freedom movements.
Talking about Pakistan’s commitment for achieving sustainable peace, Senator Sherry Rehman, in her keynote address at the seminar, said Pakistan was looking to protect its interest but was also “interested to be a problem solver.” She said amid new security challenges where Pakistan was seen through the prism of Afghanistan there was a need to rethink and reconsider policies.
Chairing the session on Evolving Global Order, President of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Sardar Masood Khan said there was a need to resolve the longstanding Kashmir issue.
He said Pakistan had survived many crises because of strong institutions. “I would say don’t dismantle the institutions.”
He said Pakistan should present itself on all forums adding, “We must continue to invest in peace and education.”
Earlier, in his welcome address President CPSD, Lt. Gen. Agha M. Umer Farooq (Retd) highlighted the objective of the conference in the emerging world order and subsequent changing statecraft amid the rising China and brewing rivalry in Southeast Asia and India Ocean. He said the evolving geo-economic environment had paved way for new alliances and opportunities but had also created new challenges.
Dr. Natalia Piskunova, senior faculty and researcher at Moscow State University spoke on “Russian foreign policy in a post-1990 world: New world order and its discontents.”
The other speaker on the panel Andrew Small, Senior Transatlantic Fellow, German Marshall Fund, USA highlighted “The Indo-pacific and Belt and Road 2.0 in his presentation. The third panelist Dr. Wei Zongyou, Professor at Fudan University China gave an analysis of Trump administration’s policy towards China.
The final session of the first day of the conference, geo-politics and transforming statecraft, was led by Ambassador Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry, Chairman of Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI)’. It was participated by Eminent Professor Dr. Marvin Weinbaum, Director for Pakistan Studies at the Middle East Institute, Washington DC; Parvin Sawnhey, Editor at Force magazine, India and Ambassador Sarwar Naqvi, Executive Director CISS.
On an optimistic note Sawnhey commented that peace talks between India and Pakistan were possible in contemporary time. While Dr Weinbaum said decisive military victory was unachievable in Afghanistan and parties to the conflict must envision a shared set of values. The choice between constitutional democracy and Islamic Emirate in Afghanistan was incompatible while commercial and energy interdependence could bring the region together.