Iran-Saudi tensions: PM Imran to leave for Tehran today

PM Imran to discuss gulf security issues in meeting with Khamenei, Rouhani

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ISLAMABAD: With a mission to lessen the ongoing tension in the region, Prime Minister Imran Khan will leave for Iran on one-day visit on Sunday (tomorrow) to mediate talks between Tehran and Riyadh. The premier will meet top Iranian leadership including President Hassan Rouhani. Imran Khan will reach Saudi Arabia on Tuesday and take the Saudi government into confidence regarding his visit to Iran.
The PM is scheduled to meet Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman during his one-day stay in the country. The prime minister will also highlight Kashmir issue in Tehran and Riyadh. It is pertinent here to mention that the federal cabinet meeting has been rescheduled owing to Imran Khan’s visit to Saudi Arabia. The session will now be held on Monday instead of Tuesday.
In this regard, Foreign Office said that during the visit, the prime minister would meet with the Iranian leadership, including Supreme Leader Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei and President Dr Hassan Rouhani. Besides the issues relating to peace and security in the Gulf, bilateral matters and important regional developments will be discussed.
This will be the prime minister’s second visit to Iran this year. The prime minister also had a bilateral meeting with the Iranian president on the sidelines of the 74th UN General Assembly session in New York last month.
It emerged today that Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif welcomed efforts for mediation with Saudi Arabia ahead of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to the country.
“We’ve always been open to discussing anything with Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia is our neighbor. We’re going to be here together permanently,” Zarif said in an interview.
The confirmation came after the Foreign Office on Thursday said PM Imran was likely to visit Saudi Arabia and Iran, weeks after Islamabad said Washington had asked it to mediate with Tehran. The announcement of the possible visit comes after PM Imran last month said that US President Donald Trump had asked him to help defuse tensions in the Middle East.
Earlier, Prime Minister Khan on Saturday said that no negligence will be tolerated in resolution of public complaints on Pakistan Citizen’s Portal. According to a letter issued from his office, PM Imran directed concerned authorities to ensure that decisions with regard to resolution or to drop a complaint shall be backed by requisite approval from the competent authority, Radio Pakistan reported.
Any officer in his official capacity or as a focal person is not authorized to resolve or drop a complaint until the same has been approved the authority competent to do so,” read the letter.
The letter noted that administrative head of the concerned organization shall be held responsible for quality of complaint resolution processes.The directions have been conveyed to all four provinces through the letter.

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