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Rabbani to be new Pak foreign min

Hina Rabbani Khar, Pakistan's minister of state for foreign affairs, is being widely tipped to be elevated as a full-fledged foreign minister ahead of crucial talks with India next month, official sources said today.

world Updated: Jun 24, 2011 11:52 IST
PTI

Hina Rabbani Khar, Pakistan's minister of state for foreign affairs, is being widely tipped to be elevated as a full-fledged foreign minister ahead of crucial talks with India next month, official sources said on Friday.

Khar, 34, is the daughter of veteran politician Malik Ghulam Noor Rabbani Khar and the niece of former Governor Malik Ghulam Mustafa Khar. She was a member of the PML-Q party during former military ruler Pervez Musharraf's regime and joined the ruling Pakistan People's Party ahead of the 2008 general election.

Insiders in Pakistan's foreign office told PTI that Khar had emerged as a front-runner in the race for the slot of foreign minister, which has been vacant since previous incumbent Shah Mahmood Qureshi was removed during a cabinet reshuffle in February.

Other candidates vying for the position, including federal ministers Sardar Aseff Ahmad Ali and Makhdoom Sahabuddin and National Assembly Speaker Fehmida Mirza, were no longer considered strong contenders for the slot, the sources said.

The move to appoint a full time minister for the Foreign Office has gained urgency as talks between the foreign ministers of India and Pakistan are expected to be held next month.

First Published: Jun 24, 2011 11:50 IST