Moin becomes envoy in China, Moazzam made HC for UK

August 04, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has appointed Special Secretary of the Foreign Affairs Moazzam Ahmad Khan as High Commissioner for the United Kingdom while Pakistan’s new ambassador for China Moin-ul-Haq...

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has appointed Special Secretary of the Foreign Affairs Moazzam Ahmad Khan as High Commissioner for the United Kingdom while Pakistan’s new ambassador for China Moin-ul-Haq has assumed assignment in Beijing with an expressed resolve that the two countries would resist hegemonic designs cropping in the region.

Moin-ul-Haq who has dashed to Beijing from Paris where he was country’s ambassador, would convey Islamabad’s desire for maintaining of peace in the region with dignity and joining hands China for the cause. Well-placed diplomatic sources told The News here Monday that just before the first anniversary of annexation of Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) with India and changing status of Ladakh, assumption of new envoy form Pakistan would help greatly to evolve a positive strategy in dealing with any aggression.

Moin-ul-Haq was appointed Pakistan’s high commissioner for India in July last year but Pakistan expelled Indian High Commissioner in Islamabad Ajay Bisaria in the wake of annexation of IOK by India and consequently Moin didn’t travel to New Delhi to take charge from where Sohail Mahmood was earlier transferred back to Islamabad for posting as the Foreign Secretary.

Ambassador Moin-ul-Haq has replaced Ms. Naghmana Alamgir Hashmi who has attained superannuation and stood retired after returning from Beijing. She promoted and strengthened Pakistan's deep-rooted friendship with China, cemented economic and trade ties and took concrete steps to promote cultural and people-to-people exchanges under the two countries' All-Weather Strategic Cooperative Partnership during her stay in Chinese capital. Hashmi also supervised measures to protect the lives of Pakistani nationals stranded in Wuhan, where the COVID-19 first emerged in China, and other parts of China during the epidemic.

As a distinguished diplomat of Pakistan who has served as Pakistan's Ambassador to the European Union, Belgium, Luxemburg and Ireland, Hashmi arrived in China in July 2018 for her ambassadorial assignment. She had earlier served in Beijing from 2003 to 2007 as the deputy head of mission. During her 38-year career, she has also served in Denmark, France and Indonesia. At Pakistan's Foreign Ministry, Hashmi also served in various capacities in the departments of Human Resource and Career Planning, United Nations, Policy Planning and Public Diplomacy and the Organization of Islamic Conference.

Yet in another important diplomatic change the government has formally cancelled the appointment of Ambassador Zahid Nasarullah’s appointment as ambassador in Cambodia. He is currently ambassador in Kabul for Afghanistan. A grade 22 officer Zahid will be considered for posting in Paris as ambassador for France.

Spokesperson of the Foreign Office Ms. Ayesha Farooqi is also eying on Paris as she had also earlier served there. Chief of Protocol (CP) Murad Ashraf Janjua has been appointed High Commissioner in New Zealand. He will be leaving Wellington next month. The sources hinted that Additional Foreign Secretary for Africa Ali Javaid, Additional Secretary for Special Projects Muhammad Imran Mirza and Director General Protocol Division Hasan Afzal Khan are being considered for replacement as new CP. The new Chief of Protocol will also be appointed next month, the sources said.

Pakistan’s high commissioner designated for the United Kingdom Moazzam Khan is expected to take up his responsibilities in London early September as formal consent of the British government for his appointment would be received later this month.

Incumbent high commissioner in London Nafis Zikaria who has retired from service, has been asked to continue till the arrival of his replacement in the British capital, the sources added. Moazzam Ahmad Khan was country’s ambassador for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) before assuming on of the senior most slots at the headquarters. The assignment in London has attained significance in the backdrop of some important developments.

The ailing former prime minister and Quaid of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Nawaz Sharif and some of his family members, PTI’s estranged leader Jahangir Tareen and some people implicated in criminal cases presence in the United Kingdom has enhanced the importance of the change in envoy in London, the sources pointed out.

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