US Congresswoman Ilhan Omar meets Pakistan leadership

ISLAMABAD: Muslim US Congresswoman Ilhan Abdullah Omar on Wednesday met Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, President Arif Alvi as well as ex-premier Imran Khan during her maiden visit to Pakistan.

The Congresswoman is on a four-day visit to Pakistan — April 20-24 — where apart from having meetings with the political leadership in Islamabad, she will visit Lahore and Azad Jammu and Kashmir to have a greater understanding of Pakistan’s cultural, social, political, and economic potential, the PM’s Office said.

Meanwhile, the prime minister, during their meeting at the PM Office, warmly welcomed her on her first-ever visit to Pakistan and appreciated her courage of convictions and political struggle.

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The premier hoped that it would lead to deepening people-to-people ties and strengthen exchanges between the Parliament of Pakistan and the US Congress.

The prime minister underscored that Pakistan valued its long-standing relationship with the United States and wanted to further deepen bilateral cooperation based on mutual respect, trust, and equality.

He highlighted that constructive engagement between the two countries could help promote peace, security, and development in the region.

During the meeting, matters of mutual interest including Pakistan-US bilateral relations as well as regional situations were discussed. Maintaining that the US was Pakistan’s largest trading partner, the prime minister emphasised the need to further enhance cooperation between the two countries, especially in the trade and investment fields.

The prime minister emphasised that a peaceful and stable South Asian region can focus on its growth and development. He added that concerted efforts, at the global level, were needed to deal with the scourge of Islamophobia.

In response, the congresswoman thanked the prime minister and hoped that her visit to the country would help strengthen ties between Pakistan and the US Congress.

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The Muslim US congresswoman also met former prime minister Imran Khan at his residence in Bani Gala, Islamabad.

Sharing a photo of PTI Chairman Imran Khan and Ilhan Omar on her Twitter handle, former minister for human rights Shireen Mazari said that matters of mutual interest, Islamophobia, and other issues were discussed in the meeting.

“Ilhan expressed her admiration for Imran Khan and his position on and work against Islamophobia globally,” she wrote.

Speaking on the occasion, Imran Khan appreciated her courageous and principled position on issues, she added

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