Pakistan to deploy troops in Saudi Arabia


Team Udayavani, Feb 16, 2018, 4:12 PM IST

Islamabad: In a major policy shift, Pakistan has decided to deploy troops in Saudi Arabia under bilateral security cooperation with the kingdom which is involved in the ongoing civil war in neighbouring Yemen. The Pakistan Army announced the decision after a meeting between Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa and Saudi ambassador to Pakistan Nawaf Saeed Al-Maliki, at army headquarters in Rawalpindi on Thursday.

“In continuation of ongoing Pak-Saudi bilateral security cooperation, a Pakistan Army contingent is being sent to Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) on training and advise mission. These or troops already there will not be employed outside KSA,” the army said. It also said the army “maintains bilateral security cooperation with many other Gulf/regional countries”.

About the meeting of the ambassador with Bajwa, it said that matters of mutual interest including regional security situation were discussed during the meeting. Already around 1,000 Pakistani troops are deployed in Saudi Arabia in various advisory and training roles, according to officials There was no official word on the number of additional troops being sent to kingdom but the ‘Dawn’ newspaper quoted “multiple sources” hinting that it might be the size of a composite brigade.

It also quoted army spokesman Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor that the new deployment would be much lesser than a division, and that he would give details later. Saudi Arabia has been pushing Pakistan to provide troops since 2015 when it joined Yemen’s civil war but Pakistan steadily refused, saying it would not become party to any regional conflict. The war in Yemen stalemated and the situation has aggravated with the rebels firing missiles at regular intervals towards the kingdom.

The alliance of Muslim nations set up by Saudi Arabia and led by former Pakistan Army chief Raheel Sharif is also still in an early stage to play any role in the conflict. Bajwa earlier this month visited Saudi Arabia for three days and met officials, including Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Commander of Ground Forces Lt Gen Prince Fahd bin Turki bin Abdulaziz.

It was his second visit to the kingdom in two months and reportedly played a role in Pakistan’s decision to deploy troops. Pakistan is treading a fine line in maintaining relations with Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey, Qatar and other regional players and the decision of deploying troops may annoy Saudi Arabia’s rivals like Iran and Qatar.

Bajwa has been playing a major role in addressing concerns of regional countries and met with ambassadors of Iran and Turkey earlier this week. He also recently visited Qatar and met its ’emir’. The decision may also create tension in Pakistan’s internal politics as parliament had passed a resolution at the start of the Yemen crisis that said Pakistan would stay neutral in the conflict.

Udayavani is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest news.

Top News

Mumbai: Woman drowns three-month-old daughter in water tank; arrested

No case of Omicron variant in TN so far: Health Minister

KS Eshwarappa warns cattle-traffickers of action

Dont give nod to TN’s Cauvery-Vaigai-Gundar project till Mekedatu is cleared: K’taka CM to Centre

K’taka CM discusses Omicron variant with Mandaviya; calls for booster dose to health workers

‘Scam 1992’ leads nominations for Filmfare OTT Awards 2021

Murder plot against BJP MLA: Police serve notice Cong leader, 9 others


Related Articles More

Pakistan summons Indian diplomat; says model’s ‘bareheaded’ photoshoot at Kartarpur ‘isolated incident’

Biden launching winter COVID-19 booster, testing campaign

Omicron and delta spell return of unpopular restrictions

20-yo who sued her mom’s doctor for allowing her to be born wins millions

What’s the status of the COVID-19 vaccine mandate in the US?

MUST WATCH

‘Car’bar with Merwyn Shirva | Episode 2|

NEWS BULLETIN 02-12-2021

Leopard Strays Into School and Attacks Student Cheetah Locked Up In Classroom

Cow Video Viral at Byndoor

Lifestyle Diseases: Awareness Prevention


Latest Additions

Mumbai: Woman drowns three-month-old daughter in water tank; arrested

No case of Omicron variant in TN so far: Health Minister

Central Vista project of national importance, all measures taken to ensure no pollution: Centre to SC

KS Eshwarappa warns cattle-traffickers of action

Dont give nod to TN’s Cauvery-Vaigai-Gundar project till Mekedatu is cleared: K’taka CM to Centre

Thanks for visiting Udayavani

You seem to have an Ad Blocker on.
To continue reading, please turn it off or whitelist Udayavani.