After Pulwama attack, Saudi Prince cuts Pak visit

Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who was scheduled to visit Pakistan on Saturday along with a business delegation having big-ticket investment potential, has cut short his visit a day after 40 CRPF soldiers were killed in a car bomb attack in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama. The attack has been claimed by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed, whose chief Masood Azhar is roaming freely in Pakistan.

Prince Mohammed will arrive in Pakistan on Sunday, sources said.

The Islamabad-based Board of Investment, which works under the aegis of Prime Minister Imran Khan, in a statement to invitees said the Pakistan-Saudi businesses conference scheduled on February 17 has been postponed. “Any inconvenience caused in this regard is highly regretted. The new dates of the meeting will be informed in due course of time,” it said.

In October last year, Saudi Arabia offered Pakistan a $6 billion loan to help keep its ailing economy afloat. Saudi Arabia has also announced plans for a $10 billion refinery and petrochemical complex at the coastal city of Gwadar, where China is building a port as part of its Belt and Road initiative, another part of which is the so-called China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a project that India says runs through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and violates India’s sovereignty.

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