July 19, 2011 / 4:35 PM / 9 years ago

Pakistan appoints first woman foreign minister

Pakistan's junior Foreign Affairs Minister Hina Rabbani Khar (R) looks at British Foreign Secretary William Hague during a news conference at the foreign ministry in Islamabad in this June 23, 2011 file photograph. REUTERS/Faisal Mahmood/Files

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistan Tuesday appointed its first woman and youngest foreign minister within weeks of important talks with India.

Hina Rabbani Khar, 34, is expected to meet U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi on the sidelines of an ASEAN meeting in Indonesia later this week in her new role, the ministry said.

She will travel to India to meet Indian counterpart S.M. Krishna for talks under a formal peace dialogue resumed by the two nuclear-armed rivals earlier this year.

Clinton, currently on a visit to India, Tuesday said she welcomed the resumption of peace talks between Islamabad and New Delhi that were frozen after the 2008 attacks on Mumbai blamed on Pakistan-based militants.

Khar has been a junior foreign minister for nine months.

Reporting by Zeeshan Haider; Editing by Louise Ireland

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