News / Asia

UN Chief Condemns Drone Attacks During Pakistan Visit

Pakistan's National Security Adviser Sartaj Aziz, right, meets U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for talks at the Foreign Ministry in Islamabad, Pakistan, Aug. 13, 2013.
Pakistan's National Security Adviser Sartaj Aziz, right, meets U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for talks at the Foreign Ministry in Islamabad, Pakistan, Aug. 13, 2013.
Sharon Behn
The United Nations secretary-general is speaking out about the use of armed drones during his visit to Pakistan. Ban Ki-moon also says that economic development is crucial to any country’s long-term security.
 
In Islamabad Tuesday, Ban was critical of the use of armed drones - a key but controversial component of the U.S. war against terrorism, including against targets in northwestern Pakistan.
 
Speaking to an audience of mainly Pakistani military and political leaders, Ban Ki-moon said the use of unmanned aerial vehicles must be controlled by international law.
 
“As I have often said, the use of armed drones, like any other weapon, should be subject to long-standing rules of international law, including international humanitarian law," he said. "This is the very clear position of the United Nations. Every effort should be made to avoid mistakes and civilian casualties.”
 
The CIA drone program targeting militants in Pakistan’s tribal areas has long been accused of causing civilian casualties, stoking opposition in Pakistan and humanitarian concern abroad.
 
While the U.N. leader criticized the drone program, he also reminded the audience that the solution for lasting stability in any region involves both security and development.
 
Critics say Pakistan has spent too much of its budget on defense, and not enough on its health and education sectors.
 
"Budget priorities should reflect people’s priorities: education and energy, empowerment and good jobs.  Human rights and human dignity," said Ban.  "Reaching out and building bridges with one’s neighbors.  We must strive to overcome short-term crises of security by putting in place the long-term foundations of peace through sustainable development.”
 
Ban Ki-moon's speech marked the inauguration of the Center for International Peace and Stability of the National University of Science and Technology in Islamabad.
 
Flanked by Pakistani Army Chief General Ashfaq Kayani and the advisor to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs, Sartaj Aziz, Ban Ki-moon thanked Pakistan for its efforts in international peace and security.
 
Pakistan is one of the top contributors of peacekeeping troops and police to the United Nations. Some 8,000 Pakistanis serve under the UN flag around the world, and 136 have died doing so.
 
The U.N. leader is scheduled to meet both outgoing President Asif Ali Zardari and the country’s newly elected Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

You May Like

Beloved Lion Killing Sparks Virtual, Real Life Outrage

Twitter, as usual, was epicenter for anger directed at Palmer, with some questioning his manhood, calling for him to be released into the wild More

Video Booming London Property Market a Haven for Dirty Money

Billions of dollars from proceeds of crime, especially from Russia, being laundered through London property market, according to anti-corruption activists More

Video Scouts' Decision on Gays Meets Acceptance in Founder's Hometown

One former Scout leader thinks organization will move past political, social debate, get back to its primary focus of turning boys into good citizens More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Brian Penny from: Arizona
August 14, 2013 1:31 AM
This is the problem with PRISM and monitoring…I saw a drone over my own head on US soil

by: transparent thinker from: India
August 13, 2013 11:28 AM
History of Pakistan is enough to teach any country not to trust it. Since its inception, the agenda of the government and military has been nothing but the destruction of its neighbour, India. Its policies are not oriented towards the betterment of people and economy but continued indoctrination of its people to hate India and now Bangladesh. This country spends more on military rather than on its people, healthcare and education - a reason why educated Pakistani immigrate to other developed countries.

It's a den of terror, harbours international terrorists like Osama Bin Laden and Dawood Ibrahim. USA was well within its rights to kill Osama within Pakistan by a covert operation. Its disgraced nuclear scientist A.Q. Khan gave nuclear weapons technology to countries like Libya and North Korea, now a headache for Asia and USA. Pakistani state actors were involved in Mumbai Taj terror attacks. Almost all terrorist receive training in advanced weapons in with the help of Pakistani Military and ISI. If there weren't any drone strikes, then I am sure that USA and its allies would have suffered many terrorists attacks

Mr. Ban Ki Moon, do you have the guts to question these things within Pakistan
In Response

by: waheed ghilzai from: Los Angeles
August 13, 2013 3:16 PM
Mr Ban Ki Moon you are lucky that one of your Pakistani hosts didnt accidentally blow you up with a tricked cigar! Have you seen pictures of dead children in Jilal Abad torn to pieces by Pakistani terror squad!? Di you forget what the ISI agents did in Mombai India a few years ago!? As the head of UN, You should be ashamed sir for even going to terror state as Pakistan!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’i
X
July 29, 2015 9:34 PM
Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Scouts' Decision on Gays Meets Acceptance in Founder's Hometown

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video 'Metal Muscles' Flex a New Bionic Hand

Artificial limbs, including the most complex of them – the human hand – are getting more life-like and useful due to constant advances in tiny hydraulic, pneumatic and electric motors called actuators. But now, as VOA’s George Putic reports, scientists in Germany say the future of the prosthetic hand may lie not in motors but in wires that can ‘remember’ their shape.
Video

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video 'Positive Atmosphere' Points Toward TPP Trade Deal in Hawaii

Talks on a major new trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations are said to be nearing completion in Hawaii. Some trade experts say the "positive atmosphere" at the discussions could mean a deal is within reach, but there is still hard bargaining to be done over many issues and products, including U.S. drugs and Japanese rice. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Genome Initiative Urgently Moves to Freeze DNA Before Species Go Extinct

Earth is in the midst of its sixth mass extinction. The last such event was caused by an asteroid 66 million years ago. It killed off the dinosaurs and practically everything else. So scientists are in a race against time to classify the estimated 11 million species alive today. So far only 2 million are described by science, and researchers are worried many will disappear before they even have a name. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Scientists: One-Dose Malaria Cure is Possible

Scientists have long been trying to develop an effective protection and cure for malaria - one of the deadliest diseases that affects people in tropical areas, especially children. As the World Health Organization announces plans to begin clinical trials of a promising new vaccine, scientists in South Africa report that they too are at an important threshold. George Putic reports, they are testing a compound that could be a single-dose cure for malaria.
Video

Video 'New York' Magazine Features 35 Cosby Accusers

The latest issue of 'New York' magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby. The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but Zlatica Hoke reports their stories are similar.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.
Video

Video Racially Diverse Spider-Man Takes Center Stage

Whether it’s in a comic book or on the big screen, fans have always known the man behind the Spider-Man mask as Peter Parker. But that is changing, at least in the comic book world. Marvel Comics announced that a character called Miles Morales will replace Peter Parker as Spider-Man in a new comic book series. He is half Latino, half African American, and he is quite popular among comic book fans. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Historic Symbol Is Theme of Vibrant New Show

A new exhibit in Washington is paying tribute to the American flag with a wide and eclectic selection of artwork that uses the historic symbol as its central theme. VOA’s Julie Taboh was at the DC Chamber of Commerce for the show’s opening.

VOA Blogs