FM Qureshi in London for extraordinary meeting

Reports about PM’s participation in EEF in Russia ‘speculative’: FO

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ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Tuesday said that Pakistan will continue playing its due role in the Commonwealth. Qureshi said he will have the opportunity to meet his counterparts of other member states of the Commonwealth on the sidelines of the meeting. The minister said he will present Pakistan’s report about mandates of 2018.

 Talking to journalists before leaving for Britain, Qureshi said, he will be participating in an extraordinary meeting of the Commonwealth at the invitation of British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

FM Shah Mehmood Qureshi underscored the need to increase cooperation in diverse fields. He lauded the contribution made by the Pakistani Diaspora in the UK, especially in deepening people-to-people contacts. The foreign minister apprised the UK minister about the immense potential and opportunities for tourism in Pakistan and steps taken by the current government to promote this sector.

Talking to media on the Heathrow airport, the Foreign Minister said that there is no reality about the video released by PMLN regarding honorable Judge of Accountability Court and it has no significance. Shah Mahmood Qureshi said Prime Minister Imran Khan has no plan to visit Russia and Foreign Office will release details regarding any such plan.

The Minister said he will be participating in an extraordinary meeting of the Commonwealth in the United Kingdom at the invitation of British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt. Shah Mahmood Qureshi said he will have opportunity to meet his counterparts of other member states of the Commonwealth on the sidelines of the meeting. The Minister said he will present Pakistan’s report about mandates of 2018.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi reached London on Tuesday two-day official visit to UK. He will represent Pakistan in the 19the Annual Meeting of the Commonwealth in the United Kingdom. He was warmly welcomed by Pakistan High Commissioner to UK Nafees Zakaria and high officials of Pakistan Embassy at Heathrow Airport. He will also attend an International Conference regarding freedom of expression and will also address the Pakistani Community living in London. He will also talk with local and international media and will highlight Pakistan’s stance on different issues.

Meanwhile, Spokesperson of Foreign Ministry Dr. Mohammad Faisal on Tuesday clarified that reports appearing in media about Prime Minister Imran Khan’s participation in Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) in Russia are ‘speculative.’ In a statement on Twitter, Dr. Faisal said Pakistan and Russia remain in contact about engagement at the highest level.

Any announcement in this regard would be made formally at [the] appropriate time, he wrote.

Few days earlier, sources relayed that Prime Minister Imran Khan will pay a visit to Russia in September on the invitation of President Vladimir Putin to attend the Eastern Economic Forum as a special guest. The EEF is scheduled to be held from Sept 4 to 6 in the Russian city of Vladivostok.

Sources quoted President Putin as saying that he would be happy if the prime minister attended the conference in Russia. It was reported by sources that the Russian president had extended the invitation to the prime minister during the 19th Meeting of the Council of the Heads of State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Bishkek, which the latter had accepted.

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