London: Miffed by the media spotlight on
her fashion accessories during her recent trip to India,
Pakistan`s Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar wonders whether
a man in her position would have attracted similar attention.
The youngest and first woman foreign minister of
Pakistan, who was closely followed in the Indian media, more
for her pearl necklace, her Roberto Cavalli shades and Birkin
bag than the bilateral talks, says focus should not be on the
"You don`t want the attention to focus on the
frivolous... A guy in my place would never get such attention;
nobody would be talking about his suit," 34-year-old Khar told
the Guardian daily during her flight to Islamabad from Lahore.
"I refuse to be apologetic about it; I will continue
to be who I am," Khar said as she flicked through a stack of
newspapers filled with her pictures.
While the Indian media went gaga over her designer
accessories, the daily said back in Pakistan, opinion was
divided amid arguments about sexism, dynastic politics and the
propriety of carrying a pricey handbag.
On the issue of Indo-Pak talks, Khar said this was a
"I told Mr Krishna I would like to reach a point where
if an issue comes up, I should be able to pick up the phone
and say, `this really isn`t working`. And he agreed," she
The daily said the bigger question about Khar and
every foreign minister in Pakistan is whether she is really
The army is acknowledged to control the main levers of
policy, directly or indirectly -- be it nuclear weapons,
India, Afghanistan or the US, it said, pointing to the fact
that critics had decried her predecessor Shah Mehmood Qureshi
as "army`s man".
"We have many stakeholders, and all their views are
taken into consideration," she said, measuring her words
"But at the end of the day, you have to create the
space to get things done... our job is to guide them and say
`let`s be clear on what we can do`."