The people of Pakistan feel a deep love for the distinguished guest from China and his delegation, leaders of the opposition parties told President Xi Jinping on Monday.
President Xi’s historic two-day visit to Pakistan is not limited to government-level engagements. He met leaders of the mainstream opposition parties. Almost all the senior opposition leaders were present in an exclusive huddle with the president.
PPP Co-chairman Asif Zardari, PTI Chairman Imran Khan, MQM leader Farooq Sattar, JUI-F chief Fazlur Rehman, PML-Q head Chaudhry Shujaat, JI leader Liaquat Baloch and the ANP’s Afrasiab Khattak were part of the opposition delegation that met President Xi before dinner at the PM House.
The political leaders said Xi’s visit would strengthen the friendship and cooperation between the two countries and also help resolve the region’s problems.
They said China had been a trusted friend of Pakistan during the past six decades, and the people of Pakistan highly valued this friendship and were proud of it.
The opposition leaders were certain that the agreements reached during this visit would prove highly useful for the two countries and their people.
President Xi will visit the Parliament House on Tuesday (today) and meet the speaker and chairman of the Senate before he addresses the joint session of parliament.
He will be the chief guest at the Presidency, where Nishan-e-Pakistan, the country’s highest civil decoration, will be conferred on him in a special investiture ceremony.
Premier Nawaz Sharif, services chiefs, the National Assembly speaker and the Senate chairman will also be in attendance.
The investiture will be followed by a lunch at the Presidency, from where President Xi will depart for Indonesia.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 21st, 2015.
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