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February 28, 2021

Pak-Saudi relations time-tested, says Ashrafi

National

February 28, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Special Aide to Prime Minister on Religious Harmony and Middle East Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi on Saturday said Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are knotted in an everlasting and time-tested relationship.

“Saudi Arabia’s leadership is respected by Pakistan and the entire Islamic world and the peace, security and stability of Saudi Arabia is dear to the entire Muslim Ummah and Pakistan,” he said while talking with Arab media here. He said Jamal Khashoggi was a citizen of Saudi Arabia and all the respective circles and sections including the Organization of Islamic Cooperation have expressed satisfaction on steps taken by the kingdom of Saudi Arabia on the issue of Khashoggi. He said any action against the security, stability and sovereignty of Saudi Arabia will not be accepted and tolerated. “A negative propaganda campaign is being made against Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman since he assumed power,” he said.

He said Muhammad bin Salman has reinforced the policies of moderation in Saudi Arabia and his Vision 2030 aims at strengthening and stabilizing the Islamic countries. He said the US report would not affect Pakistan-Saudi relations. “In the Islamic world, there is no possibility of any compromise on love and respect for Saudi Arabia and its leadership.”

He said Jamal Khashoggi was a citizen of Saudi Arabia and his trial was held in the presence of his family in Saudi Arabia and the verdict was accepted by the Khashoggi family. He said Pakistan’s relations with all Islamic countries have been strengthened, adding that Pakistan’s relations with Egypt have also been improving significantly after 10 years. “Good news are also coming from Kuwait and Iraq and that the visit of the Iraqi defence minister to Pakistan and the visit of the foreign minister of Pakistan to Egypt will boost Pakistan’s future in the sectors of economy, tourism, culture and defence.”

He said the previous governments in Pakistan had alienated Pakistan from the Arab Islamic world. However, with blessings of Allah, today Pakistan’s closeness with Muslim countries is stronger than in the last 10 years.

Responding to a question, Ashrafi said he does not see any disruption in relationship of the US and Saudi Arabia. “The US will continue working with the office of the crown prince of Saudi Arabia which is not a weak country,” he said, adding that the leadership and people of Saudi Arabia are united.