RAWALPINDI/ISLAMABAD: In the first-ever visit to Pakistan, Imam-e-Kaaba Sheikh Saleh Al Humaid met caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar and Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Asim Munir on separate occasions on Friday.
Sheikh Saleh, who is one of the nine imams of Islam's holiest site — the Grand Mosque of Makkah — landed in the federal capital on Wednesday to further strengthen the brotherly relations between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.
During his meeting with the caretaker PM, he praised the significant role of the Pakistani workforce in the development and prosperity of Saudi Arabia, state-run Radio Pakistan reported.
Meanwhile, PM Kakar strongly condemned the oppression of Palestinians in Gaza and the indiscriminate killing of children by Israeli occupation forces.
Expressing complete solidarity with the people of Palestine, he called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. He also emphasised the establishment of relief routes for delivering aid to Gaza.
Kakar also commended the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman — custodian of the Two Holy Mosques — for sending a clear message of unconditional support for the Palestinians through the Islamic leadership conference on the situation in Gaza.
Moreover, the premier emphasised educating the youth about rich Islamic history and culture through documentaries to combat Islamophobia.
He called for broadcasting these documentaries in different languages to spread the true essence of Islam in every nook and corner of the world.
Talking about Pakistan-Saudi relations, PM Kakar said that the two countries share historical and longstanding fraternal ties based on shared beliefs, destinies, and strong cultural foundations.
"Saudi Arabia has always supported Pakistan in difficult times," the prime minister said while expressing gratitude for Saudi cooperation in the progress of education and health sectors in Pakistan.
He highlighted the care provided by the Saudi government to the Pakistani workforce in the Kingdom.
Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar also welcomed the establishment of a news agency from the platform of the Islamic Cooperation Organisation (OIC).
Separately, the Imam-e-Kaba visited COAS Gen Munir at the General Headquarters (GHQ) in Rawalpindi, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said.
During the meeting, matters of mutual interest were discussed.
"The COAS welcomed the dignitary and highlighted that the visit by Imam-e-Kaaba to Pakistan is a matter of honour for the people of Pakistan. He further mentioned that the Muslims from all across the world have boundless reverence for Harmain Shraifain and profound respect for their custodian," a statement released by the military's media wing read.
The two dignitaries condemned the ongoing atrocities in Gaza and the oppression of the Muslims in Indian Illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK) and expressed solidarity with the people of Palestine and Kashmir.
The ISPR quoted Imam-e-Kaaba Sheikh Saleh as saying that Islam is a religion of peace and brotherhood and there is no space for misconstrued interpretations of Islam.
Meanwhile, the army chief remarked that Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have strong strategic relations based on exemplary historical, religious and cultural ties and unique reverence of the Kingdom in the hearts of the Pakistanis apart from the unanimity of views amongst the two brotherly countries.
At the end of the meeting, the Imam-e-Kaaba prayed for the peace, stability, and unity of the Ummah.
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