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Sattar may be asked to continue as adviser

June 10, 2002

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ISLAMABAD, June 9: Foreign Minister Abdul Sattar may be requested to continue as adviser on foreign affairs after his resignation from ministerial office is accepted, sources close to the president told Dawn on Sunday.

Sources said President Pervez Musharraf had not chosen his new foreign minister but had asked Sattar to continue in his present position.

Foreign Minister Sattar sounded rather agitated and unwilling to reply when he was questioned about the president’s request. “(I have) no idea. I have requested the president to relieve me.”

Talking to Dawn on Sunday, Information Minister Nisar Memon said Abdul Sattar’s request was still with the president and till a decision was taken he (Sattar) would continue as foreign minister.

Nisar clearly indicated that Sattar would be accompanying the president on his trip to the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

Sources said the president would decide the matter of Sattar’s replacement upon his return from Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

Sattar informed Musharraf last week that he was unable to perform his duties as foreign minister due to health reasons, and requested that he be relieved from his present position.