According to a press report, President of Pakistan visited American Embassy to personally convey his condolence on the sad demise of Richard Holbrooke, US Envoy for Pakistan and Afghanistan. It was reported that the President conferred the countrys highest award Hilal-e-Pakistan on Mr Holbrooke posthumously for his being, a personal friend of Pakistan, my wife Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto and myself. Such high awards are not meant for obliging a personal and spouses friends. As a proud citizen of Pakistan, one could not help but feel slighted. In international relations, one is friend only to his own country. The relations are meant to be between states and not individuals. Mr. Holbrooke was just a senior officer of American foreign office. His personal friendship with Mr. Zardari or his wife did not entitle him to this award. Thousands of our valiant armed forces personnel have lost their lives in the fight against militants. Furthermore, many civilians have been killed in suicide attacks and bomb blasts. Whereas Mr. Holbrooke died of a natural death at home, one is entitled to ask how many of our heroes who died in action in defence of the country or civilians in bomb blasts have been conferred Hilal-e-Pakistan? Patriotic parliamentarians are urged to enact a law to the effect that no high civil or military award may be conferred particularly upon a foreign dignitary without prior approval of Parliament. BASHIR A MALIK, Lahore, December 18.