Pakistan’s foreign minister on Saturday congratulated Turkey’s Volkan Bozkir on his election as president of the next session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

“On behalf of the people and government of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, I would like to extend my warm felicitation on your unanimous election by all member states as the President of the historic 75th Session of the UN General Assembly,” Shah Mahmood Qureshi said in a letter.

He said Bozkir’s unanimous election reflects the international community’s “trust and confidence” in his abilities to lead the UNGA “at this time of unprecedented global health and economic challenges.”

He said the world was facing a myriad of challenges including the coronavirus pandemic, protracted and unresolved conflicts, global warming, and xenophobia and Islamophobia.

Qureshi said the UN’s spirit of cooperation and multilateralism was eroding due to “endemic trust deficit on … response to global challenges.”

“The UN organs, like the Security Council, need reform to make them more representative, democratic, effective, legitimate and accountable to the general membership,” he said.

He said the UNGA was also “in dire need of impetus to revive its efficacy and prestige.”

Qureshi reiterated Pakistan’s “complete support and cooperation” and expressed faith in the Turkish diplomat’s abilities: “While the task is momentous, we truly believe that you are well suited to guide us with your wisdom and vision through these challenges.”

He reminded Bozkir of Turkey and Pakistan’s “historic brotherhood that is without any parallel in inter-state relations,” saying the two have supported each other “in the face of all challenges and have unanimity of views on all major issues of regional and international importance.”

“We wish you a very successful Presidency and hope that you are able to achieve all goals and targets you have set for yourself,” Qureshi said.

Bozkir, the first Turkish national to head the UNGA, will take office in September and hold the post for one year.

He is currently a ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party lawmaker from Istanbul and head of the Turkish parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee.

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