Historical Pakistan embassy sold in Washington for $7.1m


ISLAMABAD: The process of selling a government-owned historical building in downtown Washington, DC was completed in accordance with the instructions issued by the federal government.

As per the news reported on Thursday, the property was purchased by Abdul Hafeez Khan, a Pakistani-American who offered the highest bid of $7.1 million, was subsequently approved by the federal cabinet.

In this regard, a ceremony was held at the Lincoln Library, Waldorf Astoria Hotel, Washington DC today.

Congresswoman Jasmine Crockett, Congressman Gregory Meeks and former congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson were in attendance at the event.

Speaking on the occasion, Johnson congratulated Khan for buying the historic building. She highlighted his achievements and extended her best wishes for his future endeavours.

Speaking on the occasion, Pakistan Ambassador Masood Khan expressed his satisfaction that the property has been sold and transferred as per the decision of the Cabinet. He also clarified that no other property is being sold.

Meanwhile, Khan thanked Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and the federal cabinet for accepting his offer.

He said that as a Pakistani-American citizen, it is a matter of pride for him to own a building that has served the Pakistani community for decades.

For nearly two decade, residents and local political leaders of downtown Washington, DC had complained bitterly about the condition of the former Pakistani consulate in the area.

The large building at the corner of 22nd and R streets sticks out like a wart in the otherwise upscale neighbourhood, The Associated Press reported.

Plywood covers the windows, sleeping bags and empty bottles litter the shuttered doorways and head-high weeds sprout through the asphalt of the empty fenced-off parking lot.

The city remained powerless to do anything as long as the building was classified by the State Department as a diplomatic property.

On the other hand, the Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP) had unearthed that roughly $7 million was spent on two government-owned historical buildings located in the US capitol’s embassy row for repair and renovation but the end result is that one building is in a dilapidated condition while the other could collapse any moment.

Subsequently, in its meeting on November 30, 2022, the federal cabinet decided to sell the building due to the heavy maintenance costs required.__Tribune.com