British FM to visit Pakistan

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Islamabad, Mar 5 (UNI) British Foreign Minister David Miliband will be visiting Pakistan to boost bilateral relations between the two countries and discuss the situation in the region.

This was conveyed in a call to President Pervez Musharraf when British Prime Minister Gordon Brown telephoned him today to congratulate him on the successful holding of elections in Pakistan.

No dates were given for the visit but it is likely to take place after formation of the new government in Islamabad, local daily The News said.

''The British Prime Minister also informed Mr Musharraf that Pakistan should return to Commonwealth to resume its role as an important member,'' Pakistan foreign Office spokesman said.

It was not immediately known what position the President took on the offer to return to the colonial club, but in all probability it would be decided by the new Prime Minister.

''The President said it was a matter of deep satisfaction that elections had taken place peacefully. They were free, fair and transparent as he had committed to the nation.'' The President said now the process is moving forward for the convening of the national and provincial assemblies and formation of new governments. This will strengthen the democratic traditions and institutions in Pakistan, he added.

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