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imageRAIWIND: Incoming prime minister Nawaz Sharif said Monday that he would be "very happy" to invite India's Manmohan Singh to his swearing-in ceremony.

"I will be very happy to extend that invitation. If they come it will be a great pleasure," Sharif told foreign reporters at his Raiwind estate when asked by an Indian journalist if he would consider inviting Singh.

"I had a call from him yesterday. We had a long chat on the phone and then he extended an invitation to me and I extended an invitation to him.

"We will be very happy to invite him, whether he will come or not is a different issue but I hope that he will visit Pakistan soon," Sharif added at the family's sprawling estate, just outside the eastern city of Lahore.

India's premier on Sunday congratulated Sharif on his victory in Pakistan's landmark elections on Saturday and expressed the hope for better relations.

Singh said he hoped to work with Sharif to chart "a new course" between the countries and invited him to "visit India at a mutually convenient time".

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Presse), 2013

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