'We have long-standing, complex problems and have no option but to start a dialogue,' Pakistan Foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said. He welcomed that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a congratulatory message to Khan expressed a desire for talks
Islamabad: Pakistan's 21-member cabinet was sworn in on Monday, a day after prime minister Imran Khan pledged to cut government spending, end corruption and repatriate public funds.
President Mamnoon Hussain administered the oath of office to 16 federal ministers in Islamabad. Separately, Khan has also appointed five advisors to his cabinet.
Foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, after taking his oath of office, said that he is aware of foreign policy challenges ahead. Foreign policy, he said, will be revised and set on the correct path in the 'interest of Pakistan'.
Qureshi said he would reach out to counterparts in the region and focus on key issues of critical importance to Pakistan. "Pakistan needs a peaceful and stabilised Afghanistan, it's in the interest of Pakistan," he said.
Both India and Pakistan are nuclear powers and cannot afford any adventure, he added. "We have long-standing, complex problems and have no option but to start a dialogue," said Qureshi.
He welcomed Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a congratulatory message to Khan expressed a desire for talks.
As for ties with the United States, Qureshi said Pakistan wants bilateral relations based on respect and trust.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is expected to make a stop in Islamabad on his way to India and Afghanistan in the first week of September. "There is a trust deficit in our relations, I admit," Qureshi said of US and Pakistan. "In meetings with the US Secretary of State, I will boldly apprise him of our aspirations," he added.
Khan, whose Populist party won most seats in the Parliament in the July 25 elections, fell short of a majority, forcing it to form a coalition, took the oath of office on Saturday as Pakistan's 22nd premier.
He campaigned on promises of rooting out endemic corruption and breaking powerful landowners' monopoly on political power. "I want to see Pakistan a great country" with social services for the poor, Khan said.
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Last Updated 9, Sep 2018, 9:00 AM