Amid India-Pakistan tension, Saudi Crown Prince MBS arrives in Islamabad today

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 17 February 2019, 08:51 AM
Pakistan and Saudi Arabia will sign at least eight MoUs during Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman's visit to the country (Photo: File)
Pakistan and Saudi Arabia will sign at least eight MoUs during Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman's visit to the country (Photo: File)

Saudi Arabia's crown prince Mohammad Bin Salman who also known as MBS will arrive in the Pakistani capital for a state visit today. MBS is on a two-day visit to Pakistan. “He will hold talks with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa and President Arif Alvi, Pakistan's foreign office said in a statement this week. MBS will also hold talks with Pakistani senators. This will be the first visit of Mohammed as the crown prince. He had earlier visited Pakistan as defence minister at the start of the Yemen conflict.

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Pakistan and Saudi Arabia will sign at least eight MoUs during Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman's visit to the country, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had said on Wednesday. "We hope that at least eight MoUs will be signed during the high-powered visit. Saudi Arabia is our close and trustworthy friend and the relations with the visit of Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman will be improved further,” he said. He said that back-to-back visits of Prime Minister Imran Khan to Saudi Arabia also helped to improve the bilateral relations.

Saudi had previously pledged $6bn in financial support to Pakistan, including a $3bn loan and $3bn in deferred oil payments.

Qureshi addressing media in Islamabad said that the two sides had done proper homework ahead of the visit, which will probably be the biggest trip by a Saudi royal, in terms of composition and number of the entourage, in the history of relations between the two countries.

Earlier, personal amenities of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman reached Islamabad. The crown prince's belongings, including his exercise equipment and furniture, reached Islamabad in five trucks, the Dawn News reported quoting Saudi Embassy sources.

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While the prince himself is expected to stay at the Prime Minister House, two of the top hotels in Islamabad have been booked fully for members of his staff, while two others hotels have been partially booked. The crown prince is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Imran Khan and other senior civil and military leaders.

MBS will leave Pakistan on Monday, with Malaysia, India and China next on his itinerary.

First Published: Sunday, February 17, 2019 08:51 AM
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