ISLAMABAD: Saudi Arabia has been assured that Pakistan will play a proactive role in the implementation of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolution on the Yemen crisis.
The assurance was extended by the high-level delegation headed by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, who visited Saudi Arabia as the special envoy of the prime minister to Riyadh.These views were expressed on Thursday by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif during a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif.
The meeting was also attended by Adviser to the PM on Foreign Affairs and National Security Sartaj Aziz, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC) General Rashad Mahmood, Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif, Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) Air Chief Marshal Sohail Aman, Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS) Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah, Chief of the General Staff (CGS) of the GHQ Lieutenant General Ashfaq Nadeem, DG ISI Lieutenant General Rizwan Akhtar Malik, Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhary, Secretary to PM Javaid Aslam and Additional Secretary to the PM Fawad Hasan Fawad.
The meeting was apprised that Saudi Arabia expressed complete satisfaction with the position Pakistan had taken for cooperation with it on the Yemen crisis. The Saudi leadership maintained that the confusion over the cooperation by Pakistan had become history.
The delegation had a whirlwind trip of the Saudi port city Jeddah and the capital, Riyadh, where it had meetings with the senior Saudi leadership, including the first deputy crown prince and Interior Minister Prince Naif and Foreign Minister Prince Saud el Faisal.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who visited Saudi Arabiainvited to visit Saudi Arabia and it was likely that he would yet another trip to the Kingdom next week immediately after the visit of Chinese President to Pakistan.
The diplomatic sources told ‘The News’ that King Salman bin Abdel Aziz had extended invitation to Prime Minister Nawaz for the visit. The sources said that the visiting delegation was received with warmth in Saudi Arabia.
During their briefing, the delegation members informed that they affirmed to the Saudi leadership that the government of Pakistan would fully participate and contribute to the implementation of the UNSC resolution and discussed the possibility of expanding Pakistan’s cooperation with Saudi Arabia in compatibility with the UNSC resolution and pursuant to paragraphs 10 and 11 of Pakistan Parliament’s resolution of April 10.
The delegation left for the Kingdom on Wednesday and returned in about 36 hours. The members of the delegation briefed the high-level meeting about the outcome of their deliberations with the leadership of the Kingdom. The objective of the visit was to express solidarity with the leadership and people of Saudi Arabia. The meeting was apprised that Shahbaz Sharif reiterated to the Saudi leaders unequivocal support of the government and people of Pakistan to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Saudi Arabia while reaffirming that the people of Pakistan stood ready to protect Hurmain Sharifain and the people of Saudi Arabia. Pakistan had always stood by Saudi Arabia, and Saudi Arabia with Pakistan, he said.
The meeting was informed that Saudi leaders reciprocated the warmth of relations between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia and reaffirmed the special bond of friendship between the two countries. The Saudi leadership also appreciated the statement of the Prime Minister of Pakistan of Monday last delivered at the PM House amplifying the resolution of Parliament. The delegation held detailed discussions with the Saudi leadership on the situation in Yemen and condemned the violent overthrow of the legitimate government of President Hadi by the Houthis.
The civil and military leadership was further informed that the delegation welcomed the adoption of UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution on April 14, 2015 calling upon the Houthis to end the use of violence that undermined the political transition in Yemen, and called upon them to withdraw their forces from all areas they had seized including capital Sana’a and relinquish all arms seized from military and security institutions. The delegation also expressed its concerns on the reports of foreign support to the Houthis, and noted with satisfaction that the UN resolution required all the member states to prevent supply of arms and equipment to Houthis and their allies, including by inspecting all cargo going to Yemen, if the state concerned had information that the cargo contained the supply of arms prohibited under the UN resolution.
The meeting expressed satisfaction over the efforts being made by leadership, government and people of Pakistan to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Saudi brothers, and play a constructive role for a peaceful solution to the crisis in Yemen.
The high-level meeting expressed hope that in accordance with the UNSC resolution, all Yemeni parties would resolve their differences through dialogue and consultation, and all parties would take steps to agree and implement a consensus based political solution to Yemen’s crisis in accordance with Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) initiative and its implementation mechanism and the outcomes of comprehensive national dialogue conference.