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Head of Pakistan Foreign Office Women’s Association (PFOWA) Jeddah Chapter and wife of the Consul General of Pakistan, Jeddah Mrs. Fauzia Salik Khan hosted ladies and children of Pakistani community in Jeddah to a Pakistan Cultural Evening-Meena Bazar at her residence this afternoon.

Mrs. Ali Uthman Akbar, wife of the Head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia, Makkah Mukarramah Region was the Chief Guest at the occasion while Mrs. Taranum Salman Bashir, wife of the Foreign Secretary of Pakistan and the President (PFOWA) was the Guest of Honour. A large number of community members as well as high profile Saudi ladies including Ms. Hamida Raza Ali, Chairperson of Al Barakah Charity attended the evening.

While welcoming the Chief Guest, the Guest of Honour and the members of the community, Mrs. Fauzia Salik expressed her happiness at the return of Khadim Al Harmain Al Shairfain to the Kingdom after successful treatment and recovery abroad.

Mrs. Salik remarked that Pakistani and Saudi cultures shared common sources. Arabic which the language of the Nobel Quran was widely taught, recited and understood all over Pakistan. The Pakistani community is immensely contributing to the development of Saudi economy. The hard work of the community is mutually beneficial for both Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.

In her address, Mrs. Taranum Bashir, wife of the Foreign Secretary of Pakistan thanked the Consulate General of Pakistan for organizing the event. She said that Khadim Al Harmain Al Sharifain was a great friend of Pakistan. His contribution for the welfare and rehabilitation of Pakistanis affected by earthquake in 2005 and devastating floods in 2010 will always be remembered by the people of Pakistan.

Mrs. Taranum Bashir recounted her long association with Jeddah where she lived for seven years with the Foreign Secretary and expressed her happiness at the overwhelming response of the Pakistani community to the initiative of the cultural evening. Mrs. Taranum Bashir who is the President of Pakistan Foreign Office Women’s Association (PFOWA) briefly outlined the welfare activities of PFOWA. She said that in the spirit of friendship and unity, PFOWA befriended nations and peoples of all colours and hues. She particularly mentioned PFOWA’s endeavours to help build homes for Pakistanis affected by recent floods near Sajawal. She thanked the Pakistani community in Jeddah for their efforts to comfort their compatriots in difficult times at PFOWA’s call. Mrs. Taranum Bashir thanked Allah for happy return of King Abdullah and prayed for his long and happy life.

Mrs. Alia Uthman Akbar, the Chief Guest remarked that the return of Khadim Al Harmain Al Sharifain had doubled the joy of the evening. She thanked Mrs. Fauzia Khan for inviting her as Chief Guest to the evening and recalled that Pakistan and Saudi Arabia were two fraternal countries which shared religion, culture and history. Saudi Arabia had always advocated strong cultural relations among Islamic countries. The presence and contributions of a large Pakistan community in Saudi Arabia constantly reminded Saudis of cultural commonalities between the two countries.

The evening was attended by thousands of Pakistanis living in and around Jeddah, Makkah Mukarramah, Taif and other cities of Western Region. The Saudi and Pakistani guests particularly showed interest in the stalls of Pakistani handicrafts, hina, dresses, jewelry and delicious Pakistani cuisine.

24 February 2011

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