Munir Akram replaces Maleeha Lodhi as Pakistan’s permanent UN representative

ISLAMABAD: Munir Akram would replace Dr Maleeha Lodhi as Pakistan’s permanent representative to the United Nations, the foreign ministry said Monday in a statement.

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Akram, who has previously served at the same post from 2002 to 2008, would be stationed at the UN’s New York headquarters. He specialises in multilateral diplomacy with significant experience over the years at the UN’s New York and Geneva chapters.

Akram, a Political Science and a Bachelors in Law graduate from Karachi University, has ably defended and protected Pakistan’s imperative interests and continues to play a primary role on other important issues on the UN’s regular and reform agenda.

The development comes merely a day after Prime Minister Imran Khan returned from the United States, where he addressed the UN General Assembly’s (UNGA) 74th session — termed successful and historic — and fought Kashmir’s case.

The Foreign Office gave no reason for Lodhi’s removal.

Lodhi also tweeted on her personal Twitter account about her plan to ‘move on’ after the UNGA session, expressing gratitude over her tenure as the UN envoy from the country.

In another Twitter post, she said that she is humbled by the appreciation she received following the prime minister’s visit, wishing luck to her successor Akram.

In its statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) announced that PM Khan also made other new appointments besides replacing Lodhi.

The MoFA’s current director-general for the UN, Khalil Ahmad Hashmi, was appointed as Pakistan’s permanent representative to the UN in Geneva.

Muhammad Aejaz was promoted from MoFA’s Additional Secretary (AIT) to Pakistan’s Ambassador to Hungary, Syed Sajjad Haider was promoted from Pakistan’s Charge d’ Affaires for Pyongyang to Ambassador to Kuwait, and Ahsan K.K. Wagan was promoted from Pakistan’s Charge d’ Affaires for Niamey, Niger to Ambassador to Muscat, Oman in other notable appointments.

Pakistan’s consul general in Toronto, Imran Ahmad Siddiqui, was posted as the country’s High Commissioner in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Other three new appointments included Major General (retd) Muhammad Saad Khattak, Abdul Hamid, and Abrar Hussain Hashmi were appointed as Pakistan’s High Commissioner in Sri Lanka, Consul General in Toronto, Canada, and Consul General in Houston, United States, respectively.

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