SAUDI ARABIA

Saudi Arabia doesn't succumb to outside pressure, says FM during Blinken's visit

June 08, 2023
Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken addressing a joint press conference in Riyadh on Thursday.
Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken addressing a joint press conference in Riyadh on Thursday.

Saudi Gazette report

RIYADH
— Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan said Saudi Arabia has always been open to a dialogue with its friends but it doesn’t respond to pressure.

“When we do anything we do it in our own interest and I don’t think anybody believes that pressure is helpful,” the minister said in response to a question on how Saudi Arabia deals with talks on issues of human rights with international partners.

Prince Faisal made the remarks during a joint press conference with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Riyadh on Thursday. “We have gone through a significant reforms process in the Kingdom. What we do in the Kingdom is based on the assessment of what is best for the country and driven by the needs of society,” he clarified.

Prince Faisal reaffirmed that the Kingdom’s priority is achieving its goals as the country is very focused on developing a pathway toward sustainable prosperity for the Saudi people.

On Syria, Prince Faisal said: “We believe that dialogue with Damascus is the only way to resolve the crisis in Syria and address the humanitarian questions. The past situation was neither working nor delivering.”

With regard to the growing relations with China, the Saudi minister said: “China is our largest trading partner. Naturally, there’s a lot of interaction as it is an important partner of the Kingdom.”

He added: “We still have a robust security relationship with the US and it is refreshed on a daily basis as seen in our joint efforts in Sudan and Yemen. Our relations with the US remain robust and strong.”

Prince Faisal said he did not ascribe to any “zero-sum game.”

“We’re all capable of having multiple partnerships and multiple engagements. The US does the same. I don’t want to get caught up in a negative view of this,” he added.

On his part, Blinken said: “We’re not asking anyone to choose between the US and China. We're simply trying to demonstrate the benefits of our partnership and the affirmative agenda that we bring,” he said, adding “our work in the region is not about any other country. It’s about the partnerships and benefits for our people and other countries.”


June 08, 2023
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