ANC President Arrives For Three-Day Visit to Islamic Pakistan
KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) _ ANC leader Nelson Mandela arrived today on his first trip to Pakistan and China, two countries that have no formal ties with the South African government.
Mandela was to meet with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during his three-day visit and receive the Nishan-e-Pakistan, the country’s highest civilian award for his struggle against apartheid in South Africa.
Pakistan does not recognize the government in Pretoria and has barred all diplomatic, economic and cultural contact with South Africa. However, Pakistani government officials have said that policy is under review.
At the start of his 13-day trip to Pakistan and China, the African National Congress leader was greeted by the governor and chief minister of Sindh province.
His 12-member delegation visited the mausoleum of Mohammed Ali Jinnah, who fought for the creation of an Islamic homeland for Indian Muslims in the 1947 partition of the subcontinent.
Mandela made no comments to reporters, but wrote in the visitor’s book: ″A very moving ceremony, which has given us much strength and hope. A source of tremendous inspiration to all those who struggled against all forms of racial oppression.″