Islamabad:(Rana Tariq)U.S. Congressional delegation (CODEL) led by Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee called on Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari today. Her delegation included Congressman Thomas Souzzi and Congressman Al Green. The delegation is visiting Pakistan from 4-6 September 2022.
The Foreign Minister appreciated the delegation’s visit to Pakistan at this time when super floods had ravaged thecountry. He underscored that Pakistan has undergone floods of historic proportions. More than 1300 lives havebeen lost; over 33 million people are affected; over 4 million acres of crops have been washed away; and close to a million livestock have perished.
The Foreign Minister said that, currently, the government was fully engaged in the rescue and relief efforts. He emphasized that rehabilitation of the millions impactedand reconstruction of critical infrastructure required enormous resources which was a huge challenge.
He underlined that despite being one of the lowest emitters of carbon emissions, Pakistan was the mostadversely impacted by the climate change. He stressed that the developed countries must step up their climate efforts, including towards the provision of predictable climate finance for mitigating the adverse impacts of climate change in the developing world.
The Foreign Minister hoped that the international community would recognize the enormity of challenge faced by Pakistan and assist Pakistan in its rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts. The Foreign Minister stressedthat Pakistan was neither the first nor the last country to face a climate catastrophe and expressed the need to engage on a common climate agenda and called forclimate justice at the global level.
Congresswoman Lee underscored that she wasoverwhelmed by the devastation caused by floods and maintained that her delegation, having assessed the on-ground situation, will support efforts of the U.S. Congress and the U.S. Administration to assist Pakistan in thesetrying times.