Crown prince agrees to release around 2,000 Pakistani prisoners in Saudi Arabia

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Pakistan’s information minister Fawad Chaudhry has on Monday announced that Saudi Arabia crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, also known as MBS, had ordered the immediate release of more than 2,000 Pakistani prisoners in Saudi Arabia prison, a morning after MBS promised to deliver “whatever we can do” for Pakistanis’ living in Saudi.

According to the Dawn news reports, at a ceremony which was held to welcome MBS on Sunday night at Prime Minister House, Prime Minister Imran Khan had made a “special request” to the crown prince to overlook into Pakistani labourers’ hardships working in the kingdom, as well as to “look upon them as your own people”.

Khan had said: “There are some 3,000 [Pakistani] prisoners there and we just would like you to bear in mind that they are poor people who have left their families behind.”

MBS had responded to Khan by assuring to consider him as Pakistani envoy to Saudi Arabia. MBS continued to say: “We cannot say no to Pakistan … whatever we can do, we will deliver that.”

In a tweet, Khan wrote: “Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman won the hearts of the people of Pakistan when he said “consider me Pakistan’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia” in response to my asking him to treat the 2.5 mn Pakistani’s working in KSA as his own.”

In a tweet, Chaudhry said: “As a sequel to Prime Minister of Pakistan’s request, His Royal Highness the Crown Prince of KSA Mohammad Bin Salman has ordered the immediate release of 2,107 Pakistani prisoners from Saudi Jails.”

Pak’ foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi noted MBD had “graciously agreed” to release the Pak prisoners “with immediate effect”. He announced, “Cases of the remaining will be reviewed.”

Saudi has signed pact worth $21 billion with Islamabad in several key areas, including cooperation in the power production, promotion of sports, technical assistance as well as establishment of petrochemical plant and an oil refinery.

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