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Prime Minister Imran Khan will leave for Saudi Arabia today ahead of his trip to New York for attending the UN General Assembly session. The two-day visit and stopover in Riyadh to discuss various issues including the situation in Kashmir and latest regional situation with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman comes at a time when tension between Saudi Arabia and Iran has once again escalated in the wake of Sep 14 attack on the world's largest oil processing plant of the KSA.

The Saudi Aramco stated in a press release on Sep 14 that its emergency crew contained fires at its plants in Abqaiq and Khurais, as a result of terrorist attacks that resulted in production suspension of 5.7 million barrels of crude oil per day.

Pakistan strongly condemned the attack on Saudi oil facilities and assured its full support to the Kingdom. In his telephonic conversation with the crown prince on Monday last, the prime minister condemned the attack on the Kingdom's oil facilities and vowed to support Saudi Arabia against any terrorist attack.

The media office of the PM House stated that the prime minister reiterated that Pakistan will stand by Saudi Arabia in case of any threat to sanctity or security of Haramain Sharifain. According to diplomatic sources, the prime minister's visit to Saudi Arabia is very important which is happening at a time when Pakistan is seeking to garner support for its position on Kashmir after New Delhi's unilateral steps of Aug 5 which led to heightened tension between the two countries.

After staying for two days in Saudi Arabia, the sources said the prime minister along with his delegation will leave for New York where he would raise the Kashmir issue at the UN General Assembly Session and apprise the international community of the current situation in Indian-occupied Jammu and Kashmir due to a lockdown that began on Aug 4.

The prime minister is scheduled to address the UN General Assembly on Sep 27 after the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's speech who will also be addressing the world forum the same day.

The prime minister is also likely to hold meeting with US President Donald Trump and other world leaders on the sidelines of UN General Assembly session in New York, in which he would apprise them of the latest situation in Indian-occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2019

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