'Royal' Qureshi fundraiser visit to New York cost 'broke' Pak over 20,000 dollars

Islamabad, Aug.25 (ANI): While the country is begging for more funds from the international community to cope with the devastating floods, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi spent thousands of dollars during his recent 'royal' tour of New York, where he urged countries for more donations.

According to reports, Qureshi spent over 20, 000 dollars from the national exchequer during his tour.

While British Prime Minister David Cameron, who was also in New York to attend the same meeting which Qureshi attended, stayed at the British consulate residence, the Foreign Minister and his six member team of delegates chose the Barclay Continental Hotel, one of the most expensive hotels in the city, to take rest.

The Barclay Continental is the same hotel where President Asif Ali Zardari stays whenever he is in New York.

Interestingly, Qureshi's hotel reservation was managed by Ambassador Hussain Haqqani, The Nation reports.

However, a Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesperson denied allegations against Qureshi spending a royal time in New York, saying the figures regarding expenditure incurred on his stay at the hotel were far less than what were being reported in the media.

This is not for the first time that a Pakistani leader has been accused of spending lavishly on foreign tours on people's money.

Ironically, in 2008, Qureshi himself had disclosed that former President General Pervez Musharraf and his wife had spent 1.5 billion rupees from the national kitty on their foreign trips during his five-year tenure.

Qureshi had revealed that Musharraf had taken at least 1,325 visitors along with him on 37 foreign trips between February 2003 to 2008. (ANI)

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