ISLAMABAD – Former President Asif Ali Zardari will attend the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump in the US on January 20, according to media reports.
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Trump, who won the US election against Democratic Party candidate Hillary Clinton in November 2016, will take oath on January 20.
The US government’s invitation to Zardari, co-chairman of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) is being considered as a push for the former Pakistani president to take power after 2018 polls, as well as an image-building exercise that will help Zardari to win by-elections. On his return, Zardari is set to contest by-polls to return to the National Assembly.
PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari will also be in the US after the PPP’s Lahore-Faisalabad rally, which is scheduled to be held on January 19. He will also take part in by-elections, thereby officially starting his parliamentary career.
PPPP Vice-President Senator Sherry Rehman told The Nation that Zardari had a “packed schedule” in the US. “He will meet several Republicans and key Democrat leaders”.
The lawmaker, who is part of Zardari’s US-bound delegation, said: “This is obviously not a state or official visit but it represents an engagement cycle that is about sustained public ties with the global community.”