Paris mayor Hidalgo meets new London counterpart Sadiq Khan | world | Hindustan Times
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Paris mayor Hidalgo meets new London counterpart Sadiq Khan

Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo on Tuesday became the first foreign dignitary to meet Sadiq Khan following his election as mayor of London, in a brief tete-a-tete at St Pancras Station.

world Updated: May 11, 2016 11:47 IST
AFP
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan speaks with Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo as they meet at St Pancras Station in London on May 10, 2016.
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan speaks with Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo as they meet at St Pancras Station in London on May 10, 2016.(AFP)

Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo on Tuesday became the first foreign dignitary to meet Sadiq Khan following his election as mayor of London, in a brief tete-a-tete at St Pancras Station.

“He has made history, he is the first Muslim mayor of a big European city,” Hidalgo told reporters on the platform after Khan welcomed her off the cross-Channel Eurostar train from France.

Describing him as a “progressive” and a democrat, she said his election “is an example for us”, before they left to discuss their shared challenges of pollution and affordable housing at a cafe nearby.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan speaks with Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo as they meet at St Pancras Station in London on May 10, 2016. (AFP)

Khan, a member of Britain’s opposition Labour party, was elected mayor on Thursday with 1.3 million votes, the largest personal mandate of any British politician.

He responded to Hidalgo’s warm words by pointing out that she too had “made history, she was the first woman ever elected mayor of Paris” when she took office in 2014.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan (L) and Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo raise a glass for a toast as they sit down for a meeting at St Pancras Station in London on May 10, 2016. (AFP)

Khan said they both had similar values and history, while Hidalgo noted: “Our mothers were both dressmakers.”

Khan, the son of Pakistani immigrants, made much during the campaign of his modest background, frequently citing the fact he grew up in social housing.

Hidalgo, a socialist, was born in Spain and grew up in a working-class suburb of the French city of Lyon.

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