Saudi Crown Prince in Pakistan: Everything you need to know
Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman concluded his visit to Pakistan on Monday.
ISLAMABAD (Web Desk) – Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who visited Pakistan on 17-18 February 2019 at the invitation of Prime Minister Imran Khan, concluded a highly successful visit today (Monday).
The visit laid the foundation for a new chapter in Pakistan-Saudi relationship, marked by high level institutional framework to guide future direction of political, diplomatic, economic, investment, trade, people-to-people, defence, security and cultural aspects. The establishment of Supreme Coordination Council, its subsidiary mechanism and the Council’s inaugural session in Islamabad were one of the key steps in shaping the new trajectory in the bilateral relationship.
Investment and trade relations received high priority during the visit as demonstrated by the Saudi announcement of investments US $ 20 billion. The two sides signed a range of Agreements and MoUs in several areas.
The Prime Minister expressed gratitude to the Crown Prince for his immediate consent to release 2107 prisoners from Saudi jails.
A joint statement issued by Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, while reaffirming the historic relationship between the two brotherly countries, applauded the growing momentum in bilateral ties in all areas. The Saudi side praised Prime Minister Imran Khan’s dialogue offer to India including the initiative on opening of Kartarpur corridor.
Both sides stressed that dialogue is the only way to ensure peace and stability in the region and to resolve the outstanding issues. Both sides strongly condemned the atrocities and human rights violations committed against Muslims around the world.
The Prime Minister briefed the Crown Prince on the grave human rights violations in IOK and the need for resolution of Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions and wishes of the Kashmiri people.
The joint statement also articulated the common positions of the two countries on a range of regional peace and security and international issues including inter alia challenges faced by the Islamic Ummah, interfaith harmony, counter terrorism, among others.
THE WELCOME - PAF JETS ESCORT SAUDI CROWN PRINCE
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman received a glorious welcome as his royal aircraft entered the Pakistani airspace.
HRH Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman of Saudi Arabia received a glorious welcome as the Royal aircraft entered the Pakistani Airspace. Formations of JF-17 & F-16s of PAF escorted His Royal Highness who arrived in Pakistan on a two day official visit today.#CrownPrinceinPakistan pic.twitter.com/y3kI9qqJ6Z— Govt of Pakistan (@pid_gov) February 17, 2019
MBS was warmly embraced by Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa as he stepped onto a red carpet flanked by an honour guard at a military airbase near Islamabad.
Mohammad bin Salman was greeted with a booming 21-gun salute as he arrived in Pakistan on Sunday evening.
PM DRIVES MBS TO PM HOUSE
Prime Minister Imran Khan - following his tradition - drove the Saudi Crown Prince to the PM house as he had driven His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, earlier this year.
MOU - Agreement between Pakistan & Saudi Arabia
Pakistan and Saudi Arabia signed seven MOUs/Agreements/Executive Programs on Sunday at a signing ceremony witnessed by the Prime Minister and Prince Mohammed Bin Salman.
The agreements cover areas such as Standard Specifications, Mineral Resources, Investment in Refining and Petro Chemical Sectors, power generation, development of renewable energy projects, and cooperation in the Field of Youth and Sports.
The documents were signed by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Finance, Power Division, Inter Provincial Coordination, and Petroleum Division.
These agreements will lay the foundation for enhanced economic cooperation between Pakistan and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
PM APPEALS FOR RELEASE OF PAKISTANI PRISONERS
At the dinner hosted for MBS, Prime Minister Imran Khan requested the Saudi authorities to look into the hardships of the Pakistani labourers working in the kingdom.
“There are some 3,000 Pakistani prisoners there and we just would like you to bear in mind that they are poor people who have left their families behind,” Imran Khan said.
Terming it a “special request”, the premier asked Mohammed bin Salman to “look upon them (Pakistani labourers) as your own people”.
The prime minister also requested Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to allow Pakistani Haj pilgrims to undergo immigration at the three major Pakistani airports before leaving for Saudi Arabia for their convenience.
In response, the crown prince told Imran Khan he could consider him the ambassador of Pakistan in Saudi Arabia.
“We cannot say no to Pakistan ... whatever we can do, we will deliver that,” he assured.
Mohammed bin Salman in his speech said Pakistan was a “dear country” to all Saudis and “we have walked together in tough and good times”. He said Pakistan today was facing a great future “with a great leadership”, noting that the country’s GDP grew by 5 per cent in 2018.
“We believe that Pakistan is going to be a very, very important country in the coming future and we want to be sure we are part of that,” the crown prince said.
MBS ORDERS RELEASE OF 2107 PAKISTANI PRISONERS
Very next day, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman ordered immediate release of 2107 Pakistani prisoners in Saudi jails.
In a tweet, Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain said the step is a sequel to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s request to Saudi Crown Prince.
Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi in tweet said cases of the remaining prisoners will be reviewed.
He said people of Pakistan thank Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman for responding immediately to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s request.
HRH Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman has graciously agreed to free 2107 Pakistani prisoners in Saudi Arabia with immediate effect. Cases of the remaining will be reviewed. People of Pakistan thank HRH for responding immediately to Prime Minister Imran Khan s request.— Shah Mahmood Qureshi (@SMQureshiPTI) February 18, 2019
MBS AND PM KHAN REACH PRESIDENT HOUSE
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman arrived at the President House in the traditional Presidential chariot along with Prime Minister Imran Khan.
A special contingent of Presidential security guards escorted the chariot.
President Dr Arif Alvi, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, and Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain warmly received the Crown Prince at the main gate of the President House.
SAUDI CROWN PRINCE MEETS COAS
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met Army Chief General Qamar Jawed Bajwa and discussed about regional security.
During the meeting, they discussed the ongoing defense cooperation between the two countries, and the opportunities to strengthen it, in addition to discussing developments in the region.
NISHAN-E-PAKISTAN FOR SAUDI CROWN PRINCE
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman was conferred upon highest civilian award Nishan-e-Pakistan at an impressive investiture ceremony at the President House.
President Dr Arif Alvi conferred upon the award.
Prime Minister Imran Khan, federal ministers, parliamentarians, and services chiefs were also present on the occasion.
While addressing the event, President Dr Arif Alvi said Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have similar directions for peace in the region, developing, and elimination of corruption.
He said it is a very golden era for Pakistan as it is open for investment.
The President said we bravely fought terrorism and we are now standing at an era, where there will be increasing prosperity and peace in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and the region.
He thanked the Crown Prince for signing various Memorandums of Understanding for huge investment in Pakistan. He said it is the first phase of Saudi investments and the second phase will take place soon.
Prime Minister Imran Khan saw off Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman at Nur Khan Air Base after the conclusion of latter’s two-day official visit to Pakistan.
The prime minister, leaving aside the protocol, himself drove the Saudi Crown Prince to the air base as sign of warmth and affection between leadership of the two brotherly countries.
Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, cabinet members, Saudi Ambassador to Pakistan Nawaf bin Said Al-Malki, top military and civilian authorities were present at the air base to see off the royal dignitary and his delegation.
At the end of the visit, His Royal Highness the Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense expressed his thanks to the Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan for his warmhospitality and brotherly feelings which are not unusual for Pakistan and the Pakistanis.
For his part, the Prime Minister expressed his best wishes to the health and wellness of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz, hoping to visit Pakistan in the near future.
By: Tayyab Younas