Pakistan, Saudi Arabia agree to take forward PM Imran’s Gulf peace initiative

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Shafaqna Pakistan:The Saudi leadership on Tuesday welcomed Prime Minister Imran Khan’s efforts to promote peace and stability and his initiative to de-escalate tensions in the region.

Despite the complexity of the issues and recognising the challenges involved, the two sides agreed to remain engaged and consult closely to take the process forward, a Foreign Office statement issued afterwards noted.

The prime minister arrived in Saudi Arabia on a one-day visit and had separate meetings with the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques His Majesty King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud and His Royal Highness Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman.

The visit was part of the prime minister’s initiative for peace and security in the region.

The prime minister was accompanied by a high-level delegation including Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Overseas Pakistanis Zulfiqar Bukhari and senior officials.

During these meetings, PM Imran underscored that the relationship between Saudi Arabia and Pakistan was deep-rooted and multi-faceted. The prime minister reiterated the resolve to further deepen bilateral trade, cooperation in the energy and investment fields and people-to-people contacts, the statement said.

Referring to the evolving situation in the Gulf, the prime minister stressed the importance of avoidance of military conflict and constructive engagement of all parties. The prime minister conveyed Pakistan’s readiness to facilitate efforts for de-escalation of tensions and resolution of differences and disputes through peaceful means.

The Saudi leadership reaffirmed its commitment to close ties with Pakistan and reiterated the resolve to deepen bilateral collaboration in all fields including trade, energy, security and defence. Saudi support on the just cause of occupied Kashmir was reiterated and the importance of avoiding escalation of tensions and a peaceful resolution was stressed.

The Saudi leadership appreciated serious efforts of PM Imran towards promoting peace and stability in the region and the impact of this initiative on de-escalation of tensions. The exchange of views in this regard was comprehensive and constructive.

The prime minister apprised the Saudi leadership of the grave human rights and humanitarian situation in Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir including continuous lockdown, curfew and other communication restrictions for 70 days that had severely impacted the lives of over eight million Kashmiris and seriously imperiled peace and security in the region.

This was prime minister’s third visit to the Kingdom during this year. Relations between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are marked by mutual trust and understanding, close cooperation, and an abiding tradition of support for each other. The prime minister reaffirmed that Pakistan would always be shoulder-to-shoulder with Saudi Arabia.

Separately in a meeting with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz in Saudi Arabia, the two leaders discussed bilateral relations, regional peace and stability as well as current world situation.

The prime minister also apprised him about the latest situation in occupied Kashmir.