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Bilawal Bhutto Speech In China Asian Political
Parties
Bilawal Bhutto Speech In China Asian
Political Parties
I am honored to have the opportunity to address this distinguished gathering. It is a privilege to be
present among Asia`s leading political leaders I am conscious that sitting amongst us today are the
men and women who will shape the 21st century.
For me, personally, it is a special moment Ior another reason also. Eleven years ago, my late mother,
Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto, represented the Pakistan People`s Party at the First International
ConIerence oI Asian Political Parties in Manila.
Everyone is calling the 21st century the 'Asian Century¨. It is true that the transIormation oI Asia`s
role in the global scheme oI things has been nothing short oI miraculous. By 2050, Asia is expected to
contribute more than halI oI the world`s economic output, restoring the world`s largest continent to
the position oI economic dominance it had held 300 years ago. In short, we may be witnessing the
birth oI a new world order.
This would make ICAPP, as a gathering oI Asia`s top political leadership, an exceedingly important
Iorum in the 21st century. This in itselI is a tribute to the Ioresight and vision oI ICAPP`s Iounding
leaders.
In Iact, to read the 'Asian Declaration¨ issued at the end oI the First ICAPP in Manila is to read a
maniIesto Ior today. Here is an 11-year-old document that touches on all the major issues oI our
times. Its call Ior Asian countries to strengthen economic cooperation, guard against Iuture Iinancial
crises and establish an Asian Monetary Fund resonates more deeply today than they did even in 2000.
These words should give us pause as Asia teeters on the brink oI a second global recession that is not
oI its making barely three years aIter it weathered the Iirst. They should inspire us to build a new,
independent Iinancial order Ior Asia that would enable us to chart our own course in the Iuture.
We should also reIlect on the First ICAPP`s appeal to Asian governments to do more to address
poverty and economic inequalities. While Asia can be proud oI the rapid pace oI its economic
development, it must ensure that the Iruits oI this growth are shared out equally among its people.
Economic development should be Ior the people, not at the expense oI the people. As political parties
in our respective countries, it is our responsibility to ensure that our people remain invested in the
political process. This is only possible by enIorcing the highest standards oI transparency and
accountability in our government and political institutions.
Secondly, I Ieel there is something prophetic about the Declaration`s appeal to Asian countries to seek
the peaceIul resolution oI regional disputes and act in unison against 'transnational crimes¨. Force
alone will not deIeat terrorism and extremism unless it is Iorce tempered with political engagement
and economic development.
Key to such economic development is poverty alleviation. We, in Pakistan have initiated the Benazir
Income Support Program, which serves the dual purpose oI poverty alleviation and women`s
emancipation. Over 80 billion rupees have been distributed to 4 million women living in poverty.
As you know, Sindh and Baluchistan has yet again been inundated by heavy rains and Ilooding.
Millions have been displaced once again and that placed an enormous burden on our people.
However, we are a resilient nation and we will Iully recover.
Finally, I would like to address what I call the Iear Iactor. As the sun rises in the east and sets in the
west there is a worrying climate oI Iear developing amongst our Iriends in the west. It is worrying that
some unable to reach the necessary compromise to address their own internal structural economic
Ilaws instead choose to demonize emerging Asian economic superpowers. Instead oI appreciating the
Iinancial support provided by China, some within their society spread malicious propaganda design to
provoke Iear oI the other and distract Irom their own Iailings.
This dangerous short sightedness could lead to paranoid overreactions with catastrophic
consequences. I dread the return to the divided world, a world oI competing spheres oI inIluence, a
world oI cold wars, a world oI hot wars, a world oI cyber wars and a world oI economicwars.
'Divide and rule, the politician cries; unite and lead is watchword oI the wise.¨ -Johann WolIgang
von Goethe
We want a united world oI equals not a divided world oI rivals. I stand beIore the world as a son who
has lost his mother to the evils oI terrorism. I stand beIore you as a son willing to risk my liIe to rid
my country, my region and the entire world oI the mind-set that assassinated Shaheed Mohtarma
Benazir Bhutto. This mind-set poses the greatest threat to the way oI liIe as we know it.
My country lies wounded as a victim oI terror. We don`t lack the will, we lack the means.
We are neither complicit nor are we incompetent, we lack the capacity to Iace the worlds enemies on
our own. At a time oI global recession and natural disasters, when Pak requires sympathy, support and
assistance Irom the west we are met with suspicious, accusations and deionization. This too is a
product oI Iear. We know that drones, raids and unilateral actions are not the answers. Dialogue,
deterrence, development and democracy is the only roadmap to peace.
As Asian political parties we should join hands and reassure our Iriends in the west, we must make
collective eIIorts to eliminate these unIounded Iears. Ultimately, it would require the collective will
and joint action oI all the peace-loving countries oI the world to banish these dark Iorces permanently
Irom our midst. I believe the International ConIerence oI Asian Political Parties is an ideal platIorm
Ior the expression oI such collective will.
BeIore I conclude, I would like to thank our hosts, the Chinese government, Ior their generous
hospitality and Ior taking the initiative in organizing this conIerence. China`s support Ior multilateral
mechanisms like the ICAPP reIlects its commitment to the cause oI peace and stability in Asia and
beyond. It is a reIlection oI China`s resolve to work with other countries in the pursuit oI the larger
objectives that aIIect all oI humanity.
I am also happy that the ConIerence has aIIorded me an opportunity to visit China during the
Pakistan-China Friendship Year. Our two countries are bound together by Iraternal and brotherly ties
that have stood the test oI time. I am glad to have had the chance to make new Iriends in China and to
experience some more oI the richness oI its astonishing cultural diversity as ever I am eternally
grateIul Ior China`s consistent support Ior Pakistan.
The International ConIerence oI Asian Political Parties was Iounded 11 years ago with the noblest
motives and highest aspirations. It is up to us to see that the dream stays alive. Let us use this
opportunity to come together and enunciate our vision Ior the Iuture. I have no doubt that together we
can usher in the Asian Century."

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