‘Saudi envoy’s remarks about PM’s visit to KSA against diplomatic norms’


Islamabad June 24 (TNS): Diplomatic circles in Pakistan have termed the statement of Acting Saudi Ambassador Marwan bin Rizwan about Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit the Kingdom to resolve differences between Saudi Arabia and Qatar highly irresponsible and against diplomatic norms.

The Saudi Embassy claimed that the acting ambassador’s statement has been misreported in the media. However, the fact is that while answering questions by newsmen, the acting ambassador had said “he was not aware why the Pakistan prime minister undertook the visit to Saudi Arabia and what were the objectives of the visit.

The diplomatic circles described comments of the acting ambassador against diplomatic norms saying that foreign diplomats must choose their words very carefully while making remarks about the host country.

Speaking at a press conference at the Saudi embassy on Thur¬s¬day, the Saudi charge d’affaires said Pakistani “prime minister did not say he was mediating”.

He rejected media reports about the Pakistani mediation effort as untrue. “Whatsoever is in the media is not correct,” he said.

Last week, Prime Minister Sharif traveled to Jeddah on a daylong trip along with Army Chief Gen Qamar Bajwa. Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and Adviser to the PM on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz accompanied them.

The acting ambassador’s statement puts the prime minister in a potentially embarrassing position. The PM’s Office had, in a statement before PM Sharif’s departure on the mediation mission, said: “Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif will visit Kingdom of Saudi Arabia today in the context of the emergent situation among Gulf Cooperation Council countries.”