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Outgoing President Zardari assures Nawaz of support for full term

06 September, 2013

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ISLAMABAD: Outgoing president, Asif Ali Zardari on Thursday assured Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif that the Pakistan People's Party would fully support the PML-N government and would not involve in politicking before five years till the announcement of next general elections.

The reception hosted by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for the outgoing president had all the flavour of nostalgia as the two leaders fondly cherished the memories of their political associations. In their statements at the luncheon at the Prime Minister's House both Zardari and Nawaz acknowledged the warmth and support extended to each other despite their political differences, for the sake of democracy.

Recalling the "pleasant memories" – from the meeting in Jeddah with Benazir Bhutto and Asif Ali Zardari, and the signing of Charter of Democracy in Dubai to the Raiwind rendezvous, Nawaz Sharif said the spirit of goodwill prevailed among them for the sake of restoration of democracy. Nawaz said memories could be both sweet and bitter but his heart was only filled with the pleasant ones, and he wanted to bid goodbye to President Zardari with the sweet memories.

He said Asif Zardari's warm-hearted approach during the Jeddah meeting and taking lead in interactions proved that he had the intent to turn this social alliance into an important milestone of politics. Nawaz Sharif said the memories were so fresh that he could still feel the scent of the roses which were presented to him by the daughters of Asif Zardari and Benazir Bhutto at a lunch hosted by them at their London residence.

Prime Minister Nawaz paid tributes to President Zardari for completing his tenure by upholding the spirit of reconciliation and introducing the spirit of personal rapport and camaraderie in politics. He termed it a historic moment that for the very first time an elected prime minister was bidding farewell to an elected president who was completing his five-year tenure in the country's 66-year history.

"This is an unprecedented golden chapter being added to the annuls of our history. It's a new history in the making," the prime minister said. Nawaz Sharif said credit goes to Asif Zardari for sagaciously introducing 18th Amendment and restoring the 1973 Constitution. He said Pakistan Muslim League-N always promoted the ideology that the governments should be formed in accordance with the people's will and continued the tradition of opposing dictatorship.

The prime minister prayed for the health and long life of President Zardari to carry forward his mission to work for the country's prosperity. "I am saying you goodbye with all the sincere wishes and prayers. I am sure that your party, in your leadership, will continue its democratic traditions. President Zardari thanked Prime Minister Nawaz for hosting the farewell reception for him.

He expressed the hope that Pakistan would achieve self-reliance. He urged all political parties and the nation to stand united to confront the internal and external challenges facing the country.


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