Kuala Lumpur Summit: Saudi Arabia Denies Pressurizing Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: Saudi Arabia has denied reports that it exerted pressure on Pakistan that resulted in its absence from Kuala Lumpur Summit.

In a press release issued here on Saturday, the Saudi Embassy denied that the Royal Kingdom pressurized and threatened Pakistan to refrain from participating in the Kuala Lumpur Summit.

The Saudi Embassy re-affirmed that “we are brothers,” and that relations between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are superior to the language of threats.

It may be recalled that news about Saudi Arabia pressurizing Pakistan surfaced yesterday when Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, responding to questions about Pakistan’s absence, alleged that Saudi Arabia exerted pressure on Pakistan which resulted in its absence from KUALA LUMPUR Summit.

Speaking to newsmen in Kuala Lumpur before returning to Turkey, Erdoğan said he would have liked to have seen them present as well. When it comes to Saudi Arabia’s and United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) effect in this absence, Erdoğan stated that this is not a first for the countries since they have the tendency to put pressure on other countries in doing or not doing things.

He said “unfortunately, we see that Saudi Arabia pressures Pakistan. Now, there are promises that the country has given to Pakistan regarding the central bank. However, more than that, there are 4 million Pakistanis working in Saudi Arabia. They (threaten by saying that they) would send (Pakistanis) back and re-employ Bangladeshi people instead.”

He further said that the Saudi Kingdom had also used similar threatening tactics regarding the central bank case by claiming that they would withdraw their money. According to Erdoğan, due to its economic difficulties, Pakistan had to obey such threats, while implying that Indonesia has also suffered from similar problems.

Pakistan Foreign Office Reacts: In response to questions from the media, the Spokesperson stated that Pakistan did not participate in the KL Summit as time and efforts were needed to address the concerns of major Muslim countries regarding possible division in the Ummah.

The spokesperson further said that Pakistan will continue to work for the unity and solidarity of the Ummah, which is indispensable for effectively addressing the challenges faced by the Muslim world.

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