Bilateral talks: Zardari to meet Ahmdinejad tomorrow

It will be Zardari’s second meeting with Ahmdinejad in a span of three weeks.

Qaiser Butt July 15, 2011


President Asif Ali Zardari will hold a significant meeting with his Iranian counterpart Mahmoud Ahmdinejad during a day-long visit to Teheran on July 16, highly-placed sources have told The Express Tribune.

It will be Zardari’s second meeting with Ahmedinejad in Teheran in a span of three weeks. The last meeting took place when Zardari, despite serious reservations by Saudi Arabia, attended a two-day international conference against terrorism in Teheran on June 25. After meeting the Iranian president, Zardari traveled to the United Kingdom on a private trip but met UK Prime Minister David Cameron in London on July 1.

The exact purpose of President Zardari’s latest meeting could not be ascertained as surprisingly, Interior Minister Rehman Malik was given the task to arrange the meeting and not the foreign ministry. Malik will accompany Zardari on the trip.

A senior interior ministry official told The Express Tribune that the situation in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of troops by the US would be the main topic of discussion, with a focus on Washington’s ambitions to establish six military bases in Afghanistan.

However, a former Pakistani diplomat believes that Iran’s strained ties with the US and the West would dominate the Zardari-Ahmedinejad dialogue.

A visibly perturbed diplomat from a Middle Eastern country, who requested anonymity, even tried to establish the visit as a follow up of  Zardari’s meeting with British Prime Minister David Cameron in London.

The president might be playing a role in bridging the gap between Iran and UK, he said. “He might have brought a message by David Cameron for the Iranian leaders,” the diplomat added.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 15th, 2011.


Khalid Rahim | 11 years ago | Reply

It all depends with whose voice President Zardari discusses relations with President of Iran? Whether its HMV productions being broadcasted with Terry Thomas grin or the distance mellow voice of the people who believe in unity of Islam and abhor sectarian violence. In case his WashingtonDC mentor has given any specific instructions regarding nuclear menu would Mr Zardari placed it before his host or allow the Iranian chef to place his own on the table besides the platters of other dishes already on the menu. Even if this turns out to be a Barmicide feast both the Presidents will have to pretend enjoying the meal to shun 'others' from their rabid criticism.

Tanoli. | 11 years ago | Reply

its hard to stay in there.

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