Khar set to be youngest Pakistani FM

July 19, 2011 at 7:55 AM
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ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, July 19 (UPI) -- Hina Rabbani Khar, Pakistan's minister of state for foreign affairs, is set to become foreign minister, and at 33, the youngest person to hold that office.

Khar is waiting to take the oath of office, Dawn newspaper reported.

"President's secretariat is working to find a slot in the president's schedule for the oath-taking ceremony," a spokesman for Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari was quoted as saying.

Wikipedia says Khar was born Jan. 19, 1977, into a prominent political family. She graduated with honors from Lahore University and received her masters in management from the University of Massachusetts.

Khar is to succeed Shah Mehmood Qureshi, who left in a February cabinet reshuffle.

As the new foreign minister, Khar's first challenge likely would be to lead the Pakistani delegation for the July 27 foreign ministerial meeting in India. Relations between the two neighbors have been strained since the November 2008 terror attacks in Mumbai in which more than 160 people died. India says the attacks were masterminded by terror groups based in Pakistan.

Khar joined the ruling Pakistan People's Party prior to the February 2008 general election, the Times of India reported. She became the minister of state for economic affairs before being appointed minister of state for foreign affairs after Qureshi's departure.

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