Saima Saleem, counsellor at the Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the United Nations, has become the first blind Pakistani civil servant to address the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
A video shared by the Permanent Mission of Pakistan to the UN shows Saleem reading her speech in written in Braille during a UNGA session on Saturday. Saleem was responding to an Indian delegate, reiterating Pakistan’s position in support of the UN-warranted right to self-determination of Kashmiri people.
This was the first time a speech was read by 🇵🇰 by Counselor Ms. Saima Saleem in braille at the GA debate.— Permanent Mission of Pakistan to UN, NY (@PakistanUN_NY) September 25, 2021
Pride of Pakistan 🇵🇰 🇺🇳 #Kashmir #RoR @ForeignOfficePk @ImranKhanPTI @GovtofPakistan pic.twitter.com/NkqfWWgLWA
Her performance drew praises from Pakistan’s top politicians.
“Not only I but the nation is very proud of her,” President Dr. Arif Alvi said in a tweet.
Not only I but the nation is very proud of her. Differently abled with visual impairment, making an excellent speech at the UN. This is the Pakistan that we want where people with talent rise, a land of equal opportunities and compassion. Mashallah! https://t.co/iaGuHKgk71— Dr. Arif Alvi (@ArifAlvi) September 25, 2021
Pakistan’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Munir Akram, congratulated Saleem “for successfully putting forward Pakistan’s position.”
Saima Saleem exercising right of reply in UNGA, Saima is visually impaired but way she spoke seems her heart can see everything, you have made us proud @SSaima11 Thank you @PakistanUN_NY @ForeignOfficePk https://t.co/y15xOzvBPr— Ch Fawad Hussain (@fawadchaudhry) September 25, 2021