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Govt reshuffles ambassadors at major world capitals

ISLAMABAD: The government has announced major reshuffle in the diplomatic assignments abroad, including the proposed appointments of two career diplomats Dr Asad Majeed Khan and Nafees Zekria as Pakistan’s new ambassador and high commissioner in Washington and London, respectively.

Addressing a press conference here, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said the appointments of career diplomats as new Pakistani envoys at Washington (USA), London (UK), Ottawa (Canada), Riyadh (Saudi Arabia), Doha (Qatar), Rabat (Morocco), Belgrade (Serbia), Havana (Cuba) and Dubai (UAE) was decided after detailed discussion with Prime Minister Imran Khan.

He said the decision of reshuffle was aimed at replacing some political appointees and assigning the senior and career diplomats so that they could safeguard Pakistan’s interests and present the country’s point of view on various issues in a more effective manner.

Giving the details of proposed appointments, the Foreign Minister said Raza Bashir Tarar would be appointed High Commissioner Ottawa, Raja Ali Aijaz Ambassador in Riyadh, Syed Ahsan Raza Shah Ambassador in Doha, Hamid Asghar Khan Ambassador in Belgrade, Sahibzada Ahmad Khan Ambassador in Havana, and Ahmad Amjad Ali Consul General in Dubai.

To a question about the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to China, the Foreign Minister said Pakistan and China enjoy broad-based, deep-rooted and strategic relations and these were not limited to China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) alone.

He said during the visit, the Prime Minister would hold bilateral meetings with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang in Beijing, besides visiting Shanghai to represent Pakistan at the International Expo being hosted by China and attended by various countries.
Foreign Minister Qureshi said Prime Minister Imran Khan, who was among the leaders invited by China as special guests, would deliver a key-note address at the International Expo.

He hoped that the visit of Prime Minister Imran Khan to China would further strengthen the already existing close and strategic ties between the two countries.

The Foreign Minister said with 1.6 million Pakistani expatriates in the UAE besides playing its role in the UAE’s development was contributing a lot for their homeland by sending $ 4.3 billion annually as remittances.

He said during the discussions today the two sides deliberated on the ways and means to further broaden and deepen the economic relations in diverse areas of mutual benefit between Pakistan and the UAE, who enjoy strong historic political ties.

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