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British High Commission celebrates the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and her reign of 60 years as head of the Commonwealth

Islamabad: 2012 marks the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s reign and the 60th anniversary of when she became Head of the Commonwealth.

Guests from all over Pakistan gathered at the British High Commission in Islamabad last evening to mark Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s 86th birthday. Over one thousand people attended including representatives from the government and national assembly, the military, civil society, diplomatic corps, the media and business.

A minute’s silence was also observed to remember all those affected by the tragic air crash on 20 April.

The British High Commissioner, Adam Thomson, and the chief guest cut a custom made diamond shaped cake to mark the occasion. The British High Commissioner also planted a tree to recognise the work of the Woodland trust in the UK to create hundreds of Jubilee woods.

The Diamond Jubilee celebrations will be the start of a tremendously exciting period for the UK and the Commonwealth. 2012 marks the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s reign and the 60th anniversary of when she became Head of the Commonwealth. In June there will be celebrations across the UK and in many Commonwealth countries to mark this special occasion.

The official Diamond Jubilee weekend will culminate with a day of celebrations in central London, including a service at St Paul’s Cathedral, a lunch at Westminster Hall, a carriage procession to Buckingham Palace and finally an appearance by Her Majesty the Queen on the balcony at Buckingham Palace and a Flypast.

The Diamond Jubilee is an important occasion for Pakistan as a member of the Commonwealth. At the 2011 Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting British Prime Minister David Cameron announced the creation of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust. The trust is intended to support charitable organisations and projects across the Commonwealth, focusing on finding cures for diseases and the promotion of all types of culture and education.

Speaking on the occasion of Her Majesty the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee the British High Commissioner to Pakistan Adam Thomson said:

“The Queen’s Birthday is an occasion to reflect on the close ties between the UK and Pakistan. Pakistan came into being only shortly before Her Majesty became Queen and the enduring partnership between Pakistan and the UK has taken shape during her reign. It is a partnership that is set to become more important as we continue to work together for the mutual prosperity and security of both Pakistan and the UK.

“As well as being a landmark year for Her Majesty, 2012 will also see the UK hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Commonwealth’s two billion citizens will be cheering on their athletes and many people will visit Britain to experience the Games first-hand, but also to enjoy our famous hospitality and cultural diversity.

“Through these events, we are confident that more people will learn exactly why the UK is such an open, dynamic and creative country, as we go on successfully combining history and tradition with modernity and innovation –something that Her Majesty exemplifies.

“I hope also that this Jubilee year will be a time to give thanks for the great advances that have been made since 1952 and for the UK, Pakistan and the whole family of nations in the Commonwealth to look forward to the future.”

For more information, contact:
Mike Girling
Press Attaché
British High Commission
Islamabad
Tel: +9251 201 2000
Cell: +92300 500 5306
Website: http://ukinpakistan.fco.gov.uk

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