PM off to Riyadh on 4-day visit


Dhaka, October 16: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina left here on Tuesday for Riyadh on a four-day bilateral visit to Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) at the invitation of Saudi King and Custodian of two Holy Mosques Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.A VVIP flight of Biman Bangladesh Airlines carrying the prime minister and her entourage members departed Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport at 3.45 pm for the Saudi capital, BSS reports.

Industries Minister Amir Hossain Amu, Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed, Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Kader, Civil Aviation Minister SM Shajahan Kamal, PM’s media advisor Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury and State Minister for Foreign Affairs Shariyar Alam saw the prime minister off at the airport.

Cabinet Secretary, chiefs of three services, dean of diplomatic corps and senior civil and military officials were present.

The flight is scheduled to reach King Khaled International Airport in Riyadh at 7 pm (KSA time).

On Wednesday, the prime minister will hold a meeting with the leaders of Council of Saudi Chamber (CSC) and Riyadh Chamber of Commerce at her place of residence.

In the afternoon, she will have an audience with the Saudi King at Royal Palace and the meeting will be followed by a lunch.

The prime minister will then hold a meeting with Saudi Crown Prince, Deputy Premier and Defense Minister Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz.

She will later inaugurate Bangladesh Chancery Building in the Diplomatic Quarters in Riyadh.

The prime minister will depart Riyadh for Madinah by air tomorrow evening to offer ziarat at the Rowza of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) at Masjid Al-Nabawi.

On Thursday, the prime minister will arrive in Jeddah where she will lay the foundation stone of the Chancery Building of Bangladesh Consulate General.

Sheikh Hasina will perform Umrah in Makkah after Esha prayers.

The prime minister will return home from Jeddha on Friday morning.

During the visit, two instruments – a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on defense cooperation and a MoU on ICT cooperation – would be signed between Bangladesh and KSA, Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali said at a press conference at the Foreign Ministry here on Monday.

The issue of safe repatriation of Rohingyas will also be discussed during the meeting between Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the Saudi King, he said.

Apart from the defense cooperation and Rohingya matters, issues related to labour welfare, promotion of bilateral trade and investment, development cooperation and greater unity and prosperity of Muslim Ummah are expected to be discussed during the meeting of the two leaders, he said.

The foreign minister hoped that the visit will further strengthen the relations between Bangladesh and KSA in the days to come.