Shah Mahmood Qureshi (R) and Prince Faisal Bin Farhan Al Saud speak during a joint press conference in Islamabad on Tuesday. AFP
Gulf Today Report
Pakistan and Saudi Arabia agreed to further improve economic ties and expand bilateral relations in new areas. The development came at a meeting between Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and his Saudi courterpart Prince Faisal Bin Farhan Al Saud in Islamabad on Tuesday.
We discussed how to ease travel restrictions, which have stranded around 400,000 Pakistani workers back home, the two foreign ministers told reporters in Islamabad.
Pakistan foreign minister took up the issue with Prince Faisal Al Saud, who is on a one-day visit to Islamabad. Extending a warm welcome to Prince Faisal Al Saud, Qureshi reaffirmed Pakistan’s abiding fraternal relations with the Kingdom.
Qureshi emphasised that Pakistani relations have a solid foundation and are ready to step up to a new level. He reiterated Pakistan's support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Saudi Arabia.
Pakistan foreign minister paid rich tribute to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman Bin Abdulaziz and Mohammad Bin Salman for achieving new heights of development and progress of Saudi Arabai under their visionary leadership.
Qureshi said that around 400,000 of over two million Pakistani workers in the Kingdom had been stranded at home due to travel restrictions.
Qureshi told Prince Faisal during a joint news conference that Pakistani workers are facing challenges, you know the travel restrictions and you know the issues of vaccination.
Saudi Arabia, which bans direct flights from Pakistan, only approved the AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson and Johnson vaccines.
Those who have not been vaccinated must be quarantined in Saudi Arabia, and many Pakistani workers think it is too expensive.
Prince Faisal Al Saud said during the news conference that we talked about the challenges that coronavirus has imposed on all of us. It has imposed challenges, travel restrictions, all of these we are working on.
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