ISLAMABAD: National Assembly (NA) Speaker Asad Qaiser has said that Saudi Arabia is a selfless friend that has always stood firmly with Pakistan in times of difficulty and provided generous assistance.
He expressed these views while talking to Ambassador of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) to Pakistan Mr Nawaf bin Saeed Al-Malki who had called on him here at the Parliament House on Friday.
The Speaker said that the long-term and brotherly relations between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia were based on respect and affection of the people of both the countries for each other as Pakistan and Saudi Arabia share common faith, culture, history and heritage.
He said that Pakistan and Saudi Arabia also have a commonality of views on regional and global issues and have always supported each other at regional and international forums.
The Speaker urged the need to further strengthen the existing relations based on brotherhood and fraternity. “The Parliament of Pakistan has and will remain at the forefront to cement these brotherly relations,” he said.
He said that the warm welcome extended to Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan by the Saudi government and its people during the former’s recent visit to the Kingdom will prove a milestone in further strengthening of bilateral relations.
He appreciated the Saudi government’s relief package given to overcome financial crises in Pakistan and added that a large number of Pakistani expatriates serving in various fields in Saudi Arabia were also earning valuable foreign exchange for their homeland.
The Speaker stressed the need for concession in the punishment of Pakistanis who have been convicted in minor offences in Saudi Arabia.
He welcomed the KSA’s participation in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and opined that bilateral relations will be further strengthened by the Kingdom’s investment in Pakistan.
“Ties between the parliaments of our countries will also be cemented by the reactivation of friendship groups in the National Assembly (NA) of Pakistan,” he stated while adding that unity among the Muslim countries was imperative to overcome the challenges confronted by the Ummah.
Ambassador Nawaf bin Saeed Al-Malki, in response to Asad Qaiser, termed the relations between the two countries historic and unique. He said that Pakistan is the closest friend and ally of the KSA and assured that his government would provide all-out support to Pakistan in diverse fields.
The Saudi ambassador expressed his confidence in the fact that fraternal relations between both countries would be further strengthened by frequent interactions between their respective parliamentarians.
He agreed that PM Khan’s recent visit to the KSA would also solidify the relations between the two brotherly countries.
On the matter of concession in the punishment of Pakistanis involved in petty crimes in Saudi Arabia, the Saudi ambassador said that he would bring up the topic with the high-ups of the Saudi government.
Asad Qaiser invited the speaker of Saudi Majlis-e-Shoora to visit Pakistan, while Ambassador Nawaf bin Saeed Al-Malki also extended an invitation to the NA speaker to visit Saudia Arabia.