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Bilawal Bhutto may Return as a Foreign Minister

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According to insiders, a power-sharing deal between Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) and the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) is in the works, which could see PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari returning as the country’s foreign minister. If the deal comes through, Bilawal will join the cabinet of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif as foreign minister. The two parties are currently working on the details and timing of PPP formally joining the cabinet. Sources suggest that PPP will be part of the cabinet in June.

Ishaq Dar, the incumbent foreign minister, will vacate his position to make room for Bilawal. Sources claim that Dar was never comfortable as a foreign minister and preferred to oversee the Finance Ministry instead. However, Shehbaz and other members of PML-N wanted him to stay away from the Finance Ministry. Dar has now been appointed as deputy prime minister, which will allow him to oversee the government’s economic policies.

Bilawal, who was initially hesitant to join the cabinet, has agreed to become the foreign minister once again. There has been a feeling within PPP that Bilawal’s return to the Foreign Office would only benefit him and his party. PPP’s Central Executive Committee (CEC) will take the final decision regarding joining the cabinet.

The PPP decided to back PML-N to form the government after the February 8 elections but refused to join the cabinet. However, there was an understanding between the two parties that the PPP would be part of the government at a later stage. The PML-N fulfilled its commitment by letting the PPP appoint its men as governors in three provinces, besides clinching two other constitutional positions – the presidency and the chairmanship of the Senate. This has opened the doors for PPP to join the cabinet.

Sources in the Foreign Office believe that Bilawal is a good choice as he proved himself to be an able foreign minister during his 16-month stint before the elections. The power-sharing deal between PML-N and PPP is expected to bring stability to the government and the country as a whole. Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari to Return as Pakistan’s Foreign Minister in Power-Sharing Deal with Ruling Party

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