Pakistan’s highest profile female politician is standing aside at next month’s general election so that her father can take back his old seat. Hina Rabbani Khar has spent the past two years as foreign minister, winning headlines for her taste in expensive handbags as well as plaudits from diplomats for her businesslike manner.
Abroad she became the glamorous face of the country, serving as a reminder that women could rise to the top. She told reporters she was withdrawing her nomination papers for the seat she has held in southern Punjab since 2002, when her father was disqualified from standing.
She said that this time around she had again “applied as a covering candidate to my father” in case he was barred. When his papers were accepted on Saturday, she said she would not pursue the nomination. In 2011, she was made the country’s first female foreign minister. At the age of 34, she was also the youngest. Meanwhile, Pakistan’s Supreme Court has ordered Pervez Musharraf to respond to an accusation of treason.