Hina formally invites Hasina

Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar, who arrived here on Friday morning on a brief visit, formally invited Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to attend the 8th D-8 Summit to be held in Islamabad on November 22.

Hina handed over the invitation letter on behalf of Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina when she met her at her official residence Ganobhaban at noon.

The PM’s Press Secretary Abul Kalam Azad briefed reporters after the meeting.

During the meeting, the prime minister underscored the need for enhancing people-to-people contact as well as greater exchange among the students, teachers, academics, journalists, professionals, artists and performers, sportspersons as those are crucial to promote better understanding among the people of the two countries.

She also stressed the importance of strengthening the South Asian Associating for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) and work closely to address the common issues of the region.

Sheikh Hasina apprised Hina Rabbani about friendly and cultural relations of the two countries, existing communal harmony, highlighted the progresses achieved in different sectors of the country, including social safety net programmes.

She also recalled that as a founding member of D-8, Bangladesh hosted the Second D-8 Summit in 1999 and expressed her desire to work closely with the other members to advance the D-8 process.

The PM’s younger sister Sheikh Rehana, Foreign Minister Dipu Moni, Ambassador at-Large M Ziauddin, Press Secretary to the prime minister Abul Kalam Azad, Special Assistant to prime minister Dr Abdus Sobhan Golap were present.

Hina is the first such high-profile Pakistani figure to visit Dhaka since the Awami League-led grand alliance assumed office after the December 2008 general election.

Hina’s Dhaka visit was originally set for October 25 but it was postponed due to unavoidable reasons.

Hina landed in Dhaka around 10:15am. Foreign Secretary Mijarul Quayes received her at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport.

Source: The Daily Star

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