Pakistan president to visit his French manor: officials

2nd August 2010, Comments 0 comments

Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari will visit the old French country manor owned by his late wife's family on Tuesday at the end of an official trip to France, officials said.

Zardari will visit the 16th century Chateaux de la Reine Blanche in the hamlet of Mesnil-Lieubray, near the city of Rouen in Normandy, northern France, the mayor of the local commune, Jerome Grisel, told AFP on Monday.

The chateau is owned by the family of Zardari's late wife Benazir Bhutto, the former Pakistani prime minister. Grisel said Zardari's father often uses the house as a summer home.

Zardari's country trip was scheduled for Tuesday afternoon after a noon meeting with French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner.

He was then due to leave for London for the sensitive second and final leg of a European trip overshadowed by British allegations that Pakistani officials support extremists in Afghanistan.

In Paris on Monday Zardari held talks with France's President Nicolas Sarkozy. Zardari said afterwards that "France feels that Pakistan is a responsible partner with them in the world.

© 2010 AFP

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