- Jan 9, 2012
LONDON: President Asif Ali Zardari will leave Britain today (Sunday) for Dubai after having prolonged medical check-ups at London's top private clinics. The President will stay in Duabi for a day or two and will then fly to Islamabad from where he will then reach Tehran to attend inauguration of the new Iranian president, Hassan Rohani.
The Iranian Foreign Ministry has confirmed that Presidents Hamid Karzai and Asif Ali Zardari have already accepted the invitation, and will join other heads of states such as Lebanese president, Michel Suleiman, and the Syrian prime minister, Wael Nader al-Halqi.
President Zardari stayed in London for almost two weeks on a strictly "private visit" and did not hold political meetings. Interestingly, throughout his long stay, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) did not express any wish for a chat of President Zardari with the MQM leader Altaf Hussain. President Zardari showed coldness in equal measure and instead held a "long, private and pleasant" meeting with former National Assembly Speaker Dr Fehmida Mirza and her hubby, Dr Zulfikar Mirza, the former Sindh home minister.
No bouquets, sweets and good-wishes cards were either sent from the Churchill Hotel to MQM's Edgware secretariat and vice versa.
President Zardari spent of his time with his children and stayed in London throughout. He went for medical check-ups, accompanied by Dr Asim and the presidential staff accompanying him. He also met Rehman Malik once while the former interior minister was in London. Pakistan's High Commissioner to the UK Wajid Shamsul Hasan remained with President Zardari for most of the time.
"President Zardari also met many of his former friends but it was after a long time that he has made some private time for himself. The last few months have been very hectic for him. He was in touch with the leadership of Pakistan People's Party with regard to the presidential nomination. Of course, the PPP decided to boycott the presidential race after President Zardari cleared the decision," said a source close to President Zardari in London.
President Zardari ends 'private visit' to London today | PAKISTAN - geo.tv