Army Chief Meets Saudi Defence Minister
Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Jaweb Bajwa met with the Saudi Arabia’s Defence Minister to iron out differences between Riyadh and Islamabad.
COAS Bajwa was accompanied by the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Chief General Faiz Hameed.
“Met today with my brother, H.E. General Qamar Bajwa, Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff. We discussed bilateral relations, military cooperation, and our common vision for preserving regional security,” Saudi Defence Minister Khalid bin Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud tweeted following COAS’ arrival in the country.
“General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) met His Royal Highness Prince Khalid bin Salaman bin Abdulaziz Deputy Minister of Defence KSA. Matters of mutual interest including bilateral defence, security cooperation and regional security were discussed,” said the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) press release issued on the visit.
“General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) reached the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) on an official visit,” said the press release.
“COAS met His Excellency General (Staff) Fayiadh bin Ha’med Al-Rowaily Chief of General Staff and His Royal Highness Lieutenant General (Staff) Fahad bin Turki Al Saud Commander Joint Forces, KSA. Military to military ties including training exchanges were the focus of the meetings.
“Earlier, on arrival, COAS was received by His Excellency General (Staff) Fayiadh bin Ha’med Al-Rowaily Chief of General Staff. COAS was presented Guard of honour at the Ministry of Defence, KSA.”
Although, official channels said the meeting revolved around the bilateral defence ties. However, news reports said the meeting was meant to help mitigate the new found differences between Islamabad and Riyadh.
The fallout came after Qureshi, angered over Saudi Arabia’s refusal to hold a high-level meeting to condemn the Kashmir issue, on August 5 said, “I am once again respectfully telling the OIC that a meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers is our expectation.”
“If you cannot convene it, then I’ll be compelled to ask Prime Minister Imran Khan to call a meeting of the Islamic countries that are ready to stand with us on the issue of Kashmir and support the oppressed Kashmiris.”