Michelle Obama visits Pakistan Embassy for first time

In a first, United States First Lady Michelle Obama visited the Pakistan Embassy in Washington on Friday and Pakistan’s Ambassador to US Jalil Abbas Jilani shared pictures of the visit on Twitter.

“It was an absolute delight hosting FLOTUS at Pakistan House today,” Ambassador Jilani wrote in a Twitter post.

Although the reason behind Michelle Obama’s visit is not clear, the US First Lady had last year announced a $70 million contribution to educate adolescent girls in Pakistan as part of her “Let Girls Learn” initiative.

The First Lady’s visit to the Pakistan Embassy came at a time when relations between Pakistan and the US are strained on account of the drone strike in which Afghan Taliban chief Mullah Akhtar Mansour was reported killed.

Pakistan had lodged a strong protest with the US over the drone attack. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had called the strike a violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty.

Chief of Army Staff (CoAS) General Raheel Sharif had also conveyed his concerns to the US envoy in Islamabad that the incident had soured Pak-US ties.

The drone strike followed decisions by US lawmakers to block $450 million in aid to Islamabad unless it does more to fight the militant Haqqani group, and refusal to subsidise the sale of eight F-16 fighter jets to Pakistan, both of which strained ties between the two countries.

Copyright Independent News Pakistan, 2016