RAWALPINDI: Chief of the Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa said the Pakistan Army held the defence of Saudi Arabia “at par with its own”.
According to an Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement issued on Friday, Gen Bajwa said this while talking to the Ambassador of Saudi Arabia to Pakistan, Abdullah Marzouk Al-Zahrani, who called on him at the General Headquarters.
According to the statement, “issues of bilateral relations including defence and training cooperation” were the focus of discussion between the two sides.
The army chief reassured the ambassador that the Pakistan Army regarded the defence of Saudi Arabia in the same way as Pakistan’s.
Gen Bajwa, who became the army chief in November last year, had gone on a three-day official visit to Saudi Arabia in December.
In his meeting with Saudi deputy crown prince and defence minister Muhammad bin Salman, the army chief had “reiterated Pakistan’s commitment to the security and protection of the holy mosques and also the territorial integrity of the kingdom”.
The defence minister had reassured Gen Bajwa that his country supported peace and stability in Pakistan in every way.
The army chief had also called on Saudi King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud.
They acknowledged that both Pakistan and Saudi Arabia were vital players in regional stability “with significant responsibility towards the entire Muslim ummah”.
The Saudi king and Gen Bawja emphasised the need to continue working to eliminate the menace of terrorism and reinforce the mechanism to roll back extremism with even greater vigour.
He had also met Chief of General Staff of Saudi Forces Gen Abdul Rehman bin Saleh Al Bunyan and discussed military-to-military relations, defence cooperation and regional security situation.
Published in Dawn January 21st, 2017