Munir Akram to replace Maleeha Lodhi as Pakistan’s envoy to UN

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Munir Akram to replace Maleeha Lodhi as Pakistan's envoy to UN

ISLAMABAD: In a major reshuffle in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Prime Minister Imran Khan has approved the appointment of ambassador Munir Akram as Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York, the Foreign Office announced on Monday.
Akram will replace Dr Maleeha Lodhi, who has held the office of Pakistan’s envoy to the UN since February 2015.
Akram has served as Pakistan’s permanent representative to the UN previously as well, holding the office for six years between 2002 and 2008.
The sudden announcement comes a day after Prime Minister Imran and Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi returned to Pakistan after wrapping up their visit to the United States to attend the 74th session of the UN General Assembly.
During his “Mission Kashmir” visit to New York, the prime minister addressed the 193-member UNGA, attended UN summit meetings, met a number of world leaders on the sidelines of the session including US President Donald Trump, addressed think-tanks and interacted with international media. Ambassador Lodhi accompanied the premier at a number of these engagements.
The government did not provide a reason for the replacement of Dr Lodhi. She has not been assigned any other portfolio as of now.
Following the announcement, Lodhi took to Twitter to say that she is grateful to have had the opportunity to represent the country for over four years.
“Representing Pakistan at the world’s most important multilateral forum was a great privilege,” she wrote, adding that she “had planned to move on after UNGA following a successful visit by the PM”.
“I am humbled by the appreciation I have received for the PM’s visit and the support I have also received over the years. I wish my successor Munir Akram the best of luck!” she said in a subsequent tweet.

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