The United Nations has failed to fulfil its documented role and certain dichotomies within its functional framework have brought it disrepute among the comity of nations, but the idea of its replacement will be worse, said speakers at a panel discussion on “UN at 60”, held by the US Consulate on Wednesday.
Special Assistant to Chief Minister Punjab Muwahid Hussain Syed, while speaking on “Democracy and the UN”, criticised the UN for not having democracy within its very organisational structure. “It is very difficult for such a dispensation to effort for democracy when the countries with the Veto Power are there, which will be worsened by the intended expansion in the coterie,” he added. Muwahid attributed harmony among various member states for the initial success of the UN. He also maintained that the extremists were even in the US parliament and religious hierarchy of the developed nations. “It is the cycle of escalations that frighten us all. On the other hand, there is a tendency in the media to highlight terrorist acts committed by the individuals instead of state terrorism. Moreover, the Muslims in the West have established themselves, but they are not in a position to quell their misrepresentations in those societies,” he added.
Lt.-Gen. (R) Naseer Ahmed, while speaking on UN’s peacekeeping role, stated that the role of the peacekeeping forces was maintaining and re-establishing peace, but on numerous occasions, the UN forces could not achieve the desired results because of the disparity between the idea of ‘moral courage and mandate’, which demands reforms in this context.
While dilating upon “Human Rights and the UN”, Prof. Hassan Askari-Rizvi discussed this aspect under two heads – Legal and Theoretical, and Ground realities. He maintained that the UN track-record in this context was positive in identifying the human rights violations, but it did not come up to the expectations when there was a need to stop them. “However, due credit should be given to the international body for creating awareness as these violations have become a global issue now. The UN is not a sovereign body as it operates through states, and in case the latter fail, it causes its failure as well,” he averred. Speaking on “Anti-terrorism and UN”, Executive Editor Daily The Nation M.A. Niazi stated that the extremism was due to lack of political space in various countries. “When there is no such space, then people with political ideologies try to create room to operate, which lead them to violent actions as well,” he added. While answering to a question whether the UN should be devolved to the regional level, he maintained that there existed economic associations in various regions of the world, and these could handle regional issues at their own level, and get strengthened while working under the aegis of the UN.