Pakistan foreign minister claims he had 'informal meeting' with Donald Trump, White House says it was only a handshake

US President Donald Trump had a handshake with Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi during a luncheon in New York, the White House said, but Qureshi described it as an 'informal meeting' when they discussed bilateral ties.

Press Trust of India September 27, 2018 12:40:18 IST
Pakistan foreign minister claims he had 'informal meeting' with Donald Trump, White House says it was only a handshake

Washington: US President Donald Trump had a handshake with Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi during a luncheon in New York, the White House said, but Qureshi described it as an "informal meeting" when they discussed bilateral ties. The episode happened on Tuesday at a luncheon on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly meeting.

Pakistan foreign minister claims he had informal meeting with Donald Trump White House says it was only a handshake

Representational image. Reuters

Qureshi in an interview with the official Pakistani media described it as an "informal meeting" with Trump during which, he claimed, they discussed matters relating to bilateral relations. "I met with President Trump at the reception where I had the opportunity to discuss Pak-US relations with him. I requested him to rebuild the cordial relations that we have enjoyed in the past," Qureshi told Pakistan Television. Several Pakistani media outlets, including Dawn and Pakistan Tribune, reported the "informal meeting" citing the PTV report.

According to official news agency Associated Press of Pakistan, Qureshi received a "positive response" from Trump, who said they intend to "rebuild" the bilateral relations. However, the White House said only a handshake happened between the two at the luncheon. "It was a handshake at a luncheon with other world leaders," a National Security Council spokesperson told PTI.

Informed sources in New York tracking Trump's engagement confirmed to PTI that Trump had no meeting with Qureshi and that it was never planned. The pool of reporters who follow Trump and report about his meetings with the world leaders did not mention the US president's meeting with Qureshi either. The White House pool, which covered the luncheon, also did not mention Trump having a long chat with Qureshi, which would have had come to the attention of the reporters. "Spotted: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau briefly approached Trump and shook his hand as Trump stayed seated at the head table just before lunch started," a White House pool report said. "He (Trump) is shaking hands and mingling," it said.

The luncheon was hosted by the UN secretary general in honour of the heads of state and government. The lunch kicked off at 1.27 pm (local time), with the secretary general offering the introductory remarks, according to a White House pool report of the luncheon. "Trump sat with his arms crossed and occasionally nodded. Secretary general offered a toast and Trump took a sip of what appeared to be a glass of red wine after the toast. Trump began his remarks at 1.31 pm," the report stated. "I've long said the United Nations has great potential...," Trump said according to the report. "His toast ended at 1.33pm. Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa is seated at Trump's table as is Croatia president, others unknown," the pool report stated.

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Donald Trump's tax records reveal China bank account, shed light on unsuccessful business pursuits
World

Donald Trump's tax records reveal China bank account, shed light on unsuccessful business pursuits

China is one of only three foreign nations — the others are Britain and Ireland — where Trump maintains a bank account, according to an analysis of the president’s tax records

Substantial majority of Indian-Americans support Democrats, 72% of registered voters back Joe Biden: Survey
World

Substantial majority of Indian-Americans support Democrats, 72% of registered voters back Joe Biden: Survey

There is scant evidence for the defection of Democratic voters towards Trump, contrary to popular narratives that have surfaced in the media ahead of the 3 November presidential polls

Bigly Yuge: First lady, second lady, third lady? Melania Trump triples down
World

Bigly Yuge: First lady, second lady, third lady? Melania Trump triples down

As next week's US election approaches, Indian author Avirook Sen will send despatches from Texas as part of a multi-part satirical series that seeks to probe The Wall Street Journal's assertion that Donald Trump has killed satire