Saudi Arabia ends loan and associated oil supply to Pakistan!
Galatta | Aug 12, 2020, 08:53 pm
Saudi Arabia, the cash rich major player in the oil industry, is a nation that everybody wants to be friends with! India's neighbour Pakistan had been enjoying a decade long friendship with this Middle Eastern kingdom nation but it looks like things have turned sour now! As part of the cherished friendship between the two nations, Saudi Arabia had announced a $6.2 billion package for Pakistan, in November 2018! This deal included $3 billion as a loan in cash and the remaining $3.2 billion as an oil credit facility. However, now Saudi has revoked the loan as well as stopped the oil credit facility. Furthermore, Pakistan has also been made to pay back $1 billion, which it had obtained from Saudi, so far!
This decision from Saudi comes on the wake of Pakistan criticising the Oganisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), for not taking a stand in the ongoing Kashmir issue between Pakistan and India. Kashmir has for long been a bone of contention between India and Pakistan with both countries claiming ownership of some territories, which has even lead to a number of wars! The Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi had recently indicated that Pakistan might break away from the OIC if an immediate session to exclusively discuss the Kashmir issue was not convened! He had stated, "If you cannot convene it, then I'll be compelled to ask Prime Minister Imran Khan to call a meeting of the Islamic countries that are ready to stand with us on the Kashmir issue and support the oppressed Kashmiris!"
Unfortunately, Pakistan had not been able to gather support from the OIC on the Kashmir issue and the opinion amongst many Islamic countries remains split. Reports suggest that Turkey backs Pakistan and wants to challenge Saudi Arabia's leadership of the Islamic world but Riyadh backs India's claim that Kashmir is a domestic matter. We also hear that countries like Oman, UAE and some Muslim-majority nations in North and West Africa, back India on this. India is also said to have tacit support from Indonesia, the world's biggest Muslim nation. Earlier in May, Maldives had initiated a move to oppose Pakistan's continual issues against India and the powerful UAE & Saudi Arabia had backed Maldives! It remains to be seen how the other members of the OIC react to this decision! Stay tuned...