Chinese president likely to visit in April

Published March 23, 2015
The exact dates of the Chinese president’s visit to Pakistan are yet to be confirmed.—AP/File
The exact dates of the Chinese president’s visit to Pakistan are yet to be confirmed.—AP/File

ISLAMABAD: Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to arrive in the country in April, sources privy to the development told Dawn on Sunday.

The sources said that during the visit, the Chinese head of the state will address the parliament and unveil China’s plans for the future of the Pakistan-China friendship.

Take a look: Chinese president to visit this year: envoy

The exact dates of the Chinese president’s visit to Pakistan are yet to be confirmed, but the government sources indicate that he is due to arrive in the first week of April.

Foreign Office spokesperson Tasnim Aslam did not deny that the Chinese president’s visit is imminent, saying: “We will announce the visit when appropriate”.

A source in parliament said that the government wanted to make Mr Xi’s visit a historical one and, therefore, different events were being planned to showcase Pakistan’s social and economic potential.

Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Sun Weidong said on March 10 that the Chinese president had cancelled his visit to Pakistan in March due to domestic engagements.

The envoy had said that the Chi­nese head of state was to attend an ongoing session of parliament in Bei­jing, which took place once a year.

“It is mandatory for all Chinese leaders to be present in the country until the parliamentary session continues,” he said.

An earlier visit to Pakistan planned for September 2014 had to be shelved due to security concerns.

Published in Dawn March 23rd , 2015

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