Abu Dhabi crown prince offers condolences to Pakistan over plane crash

Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Pakistan premier Imran Khan discussed matters related to the global outbreak of COVID-19, and prospects of enhanced bilateral cooperation to address the situation, during their telephonic conversation on May 25, 2020. (APP/File)
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Updated 02 June 2020

Abu Dhabi crown prince offers condolences to Pakistan over plane crash

  • PM Khan thanked the UAE leader for timely repatriation of Pakistani citizens
  • The premier also reiterated his call for debt relief for developing nations amid the coronavirus pandemic

ISLAMABAD: Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan on Monday conveyed his warm wishes on Eid Al-Fitr to Prime Minister Imran Khan and shared his condolences with the Pakistani leader on the tragic PIA plane crash in Karachi that claimed 97 lives.
During their phone call, the two leaders discussed matters related to the global outbreak of COVID-19, and prospects of enhanced bilateral cooperation to address the situation.
“While thanking the Crown Prince for pardoning Pakistani prisoners and timely repatriation of Pakistani citizens from UAE, the Prime Minister lauded the steps being taken by the UAE authorities to curtail the spread of the pandemic,” said an official handout circulated by the PM Office.
“The Prime Minister underscored that without immediate, coordinated and comprehensive actions to create fiscal space, the developing world may have to contend with dire social, political and economic consequences of the pandemic,” the statement read.
Khan also highlighted his call for “Global Initiative on Debt Relief” for developing countries to help mitigate such consequences and to shore up economies.
He mentioned the worsening human rights situation in Indian-administered Kashmir and expressed his concern over the “demonization of Muslims in India in the context of Covid-19,” the statement added.


Pakistan thanks Saudi Arabia for supporting it in 'difficult times'

Updated 11 August 2020

Pakistan thanks Saudi Arabia for supporting it in 'difficult times'

  • Minister Shibli Faraz says the country cannot run independent foreign policy until it gains economic strength
  • Claims Pakistan’s economy has improved in the last two years due to the government’s prudent policies

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Senator Shibli Faraz thanked Saudi Arabia on Tuesday for always rescuing his country in difficult times while dismissing rumors of any differences between the two countries.
“Saudi Arabia has always been with us and we are thankful to them,” the minister said while briefing reporters here in Islamabad on various decisions made during the federal cabinet meeting earlier in the day that was chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan.
The minister said the Kingdom was a brotherly country that had “always stood by us in difficult times.”
He said that a lot of Pakistani labor was working in the Kingdom, adding that the two holiest sites of Islam were also located in the same country.
To a question about the reported return of $1 billion to Saudi Arabia, he said that the money taken as a loan. “It was taken and returned. This is not in our interest to link it [the loan issue] to other things,” he said.
Saudi Arabia extended a $6.2 billion financial package, including $3 billion cash as a soft loan and $3.2 billion of deferred oil payment facility, to Pakistan in November 2018 to help the country stave off its balance of payments crisis.
The minister said that the world was moving toward readjustment as the world order was changing, especially in the last few years.
Faraz said that like every other country, “Pakistan as a sovereign state will work in the direction and pursue objectives that reinforce its national interests.”
He also added that the country could not run an independent foreign policy without acquiring adequate economic strength.
Talking about the government’s economic achievements in the last two years, he said that Pakistan’s current account deficit was brought down from $20 billion to $3 billion while the central bank’s reserves had increased from $8.5 billion to $12.5 billion due to prudent economic policies.
The minister informed that sales of cement, fertilizers, diesel and petrol had increased many times in the last two years, reflecting an improvement of the country’s fragile economy.
He noted that the coronavirus pandemic had not hit the country’s economy as hard as other countries in the region.
“The economic revival has started … Difficult times have almost passed and better days are right ahead of us,” the minister claimed.