WASHINGTON - US lawmaker and Co-Chair of Congressional Pakistan Caucus, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson, Lee resolved to make efforts towards improving bilateral relations between Pakistan and the United States at an Iftar Dinner held at the Pakistan Embassy in Washington. The Interfaith Iftar Dinner was also attended by Assistant Secretary of State Ms. Alice Wells, Congressmen Andre Carson, and eminent representatives of Muslim, Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist and Sikh religions – Jo Reed, Reverend David Milam, Mr. Nanak Lahori, Mr. Walter Ruby, Mr. AlbertSabir and Dr. Rajwant Singh.
Ms. Lee, who has visited Pakistan in the past and have advocated good relations between the two countries said she would work on the Capitol Hill for further deepening of the linkages between Pakistan and the US through diplomacy and mutual cooperation.
Bilateral relations have been tensed after the Trump administration withheld security assistance to Pakistan over alleged lack of cooperation in fighting terrorism. Islamabad has rejected those charges, citing immense sacrifices that country has made as a global ally of the fight against terrorism.
The Congresswoman also held a media briefing this weekend on the US-Pakistan relations where she emphasized on use of diplomacy between Pakistan and the US to improve ties and working together for mutual goals.
Reflecting on the recent school shooting incident in Santa Fe, Texas that claimed lives of nine students and a teacher, including a Pakistani girl studying on an exchange program, she emphasized the need for tolerance, charity and peace. Earlier, Ambassador Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry welcomed the guests at the dinner that is held every year to share the blessings of Ramazan and promote interfaith harmony, peace and cooperation.
He said that peace, love and tolerance are the essence of all faiths in the world. Quoting from Surah Asr of the Holy Quran, he reflected on the verses, which promotes commitment to a right cause, standing up for it and patiently pursuing it in the face of adversity. The Ambassador emphasized the significance of tolerance and interfaith harmony for a vibrant, tolerant and pluralistic Pakistan.
Congressman Andre Carson in his remarks said that Ramadan is a month of introspection, tolerance and restraint, which should guide us in our lives. Speaking on the occasion, eminent representatives of Muslim, Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Buddhist and Sikh religions emphasized the importance of interfaith harmony and tolerance. The leaders of faith prayed in their languages for world peace and highlighted the commonalities present in their religions which serve to foster harmony, love and humanity in the world. A moment of silence was observed for deceased Pakistani student Ms. Sabika Sheikh, and other victims of shooting in Santa Fe High School, Texas.
The guests at the event, coming from different faiths and walks of life including Americans government officials, commended the Embassy for providing speakers of different faiths a platform to share the message of common values of humanity. - APP