Foreign Office denies reports of rifts between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia

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ISLAMABAD: The Foreign Office on Thursday denied reports of a rift between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, saying that Islamabad and Riyadh enjoy unique relations, deep-rooted in religion, culture and social ties.

“Prime Minister Imran Khan’s remarks and Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s recent visit to Saudi Arabia attest to the unchanged fraternal relations and close contact between the two countries,” Foreign Office spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri said during his weekly press briefing.

Chaudhri added Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have strong economic, political, security and military cooperation at all levels.

Citing the example of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s visit last year to Islamabad and PM Imran’s visit to Saudi Arabia, he said that they cemented relations between the two countries and provided new opportunities of cooperation in trade, investment and other fields.

The spokesperson added that Pakistan appreciates the Kingdom’s role in the OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir.

‘No change in Pakistan’s stance on Palestine-Israel issue’

Responding to a question about the normalization of relations between UAE and Israel, the spokesperson said there was no change in Pakistan’s position on the Palestine-Israel issue.

“Pakistan stands by the commitment realizing the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, including their right to self-determination for a just, comprehensive and long-lasting peace,” he noted.

He continued, “Pakistan has consistently supported a two-state solution per UNSC and OIC resolutions as well as international law with pre-1967 borders and with Al-Quds Al-Sharif as the capital of Palestine.”

Speaking about recent developments and how Pakistan plans to tackle it, Chaudhri said Pakistan’s approach would be guided by “our evaluation of how Palestinians’ rights and aspirations are upheld and how regional, peace and security and stability are preserved.”