Pakistan threw its full weight behind the new UN Strategy and Plan of Action to combat hate speech, saying that language was being used to secure narrow political and electoral gains in many parts of the world, including the South Asian region.
“An inevitable consequence is to fan the flames of bigotry, intolerance, anti-Muslim hatred and xenophobia,” Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi said after UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres unveiled the strategy at a special meeting held in the packed ECOSOC chamber on Tuesday, says a press release.
“My Prime Minister Imran Khan has recently again called for urgent action to counter Islamophobia, which is today the most prevalent expression of racism and hatred against ‘the other’,” the Pakistani envoy told ambassadors, senior diplomats and high ranking UN officials.
The UN Strategy and Plan of Action provides a system-wide programme with the overriding objective of identifying, preventing and confronting hate speech. The secretary-general said, ‘It targets the root causes of hate speech, pointing out that these include tackling violence, marginalisation, discrimination, and poverty, as well as bolstering weak state institutions.