Pakistan PM Khan in Saudi Arabia to discuss relations

2 minute read

Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan speaks during a joint news conference with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani (not pictured) at the presidential palace in Kabul, Afghanistan November 19, 2020. REUTERS/Mohammad Ismail

Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com

DUBAI, May 7 (Reuters) - Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan begins a two-day visit on Friday to Saudi Arabia, a traditionally close ally but with whom relations have been strained for months.

Khan, invited by Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, will discuss bilateral relations as well as regional and international issues of common interest, Saudi state media SPA said.

Saudi Arabia gave Pakistan a $3 billion loan and a $3.2 billion oil credit facility in late 2018. After Islamabad sought Riyadh's support over alleged human rights violations by India in the disputed territory of Kashmir, Saudi Arabia pushed Pakistan to repay the loan.

Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com

Pakistan then turned to China for financial assistance.

Prior to Khan's arrival, Pakistani army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa arrived in Saudi and spoke to Mohammed bin Salman early on Friday, Pakistan's military said in a statement.

"During the meeting, matters of mutual interest, regional security situation including recent developments in Afghan Peace Process, bilateral defence, security, collaboration for regional peace and connectivity were discussed," the statement said.

Register now for FREE unlimited access to Reuters.com
Writing by Lisa Barrington; Editing by Angus MacSwan

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.