Crown Prince Abdullah Ibn Abdul Aziz, Deputy Prime Minister and Commander of the National Guard, arrived in Lahore today for a three-day state visit to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the last leg of a three-continent tour which has taken him to Great Britain, France, the United States of America, China, Japan and South Korea. In an unprecedented gesture, he was welcomed at Lahore International Airport by President Mohammed Rafiq Tarar himself, as well as Prime Minister Mohammed Nawaz Sharif and other officials. The City of Lahore is glittering with colorful lights, folkdance displays, and crowds of jubilant people chanting and clapping along the road and on the roofs of buildings, with signboards and placards carried by individuals and organizations welcoming Crown Prince Abdullah. The Crown Prince is accompanied by Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal, Oil Minister Ali Ibn Ibrahim Al-Naimi, Minister of Industry and Electricity Dr. Hashem Ibn Abdullah Yamani, and other princes and officials.
In a statement to the Arabic language Al-Riyadh newspaper published today, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif stressed that the strong relations between Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are derived from their common destiny as well as the mutual trust between the two countries. He described the bilateral relations as "comprehensive and open, with wide-ranging cooperation in the spheres of economy, trade, defense, security and manpower." He pointed out that the understanding between the two countries has led to effective cooperation on different issues in the regional and international arenas, and praised the Kingdom's support for Pakistan in its struggle in the Kashmir issue and the cause of Afghanistan.