King Abdullah receives French president
November 4, 2012
The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz received French President Francois Hollande at his palace in Jeddah today. During their meeting, the two leaders discussed international developments, particularly the Palestinian cause and the Syrian crisis, as well as bilateral cooperation. In addition, King Abdullah decorated President Hollande with the King Abdulaziz Medal, Saudi Arabia’s highest and most prestigious honor.
Afterwards, King Abdullah hosted a luncheon in honor of the French President, which was attended by former Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri and a number of other dignitaries.
Before departing the Kingdom, President Hollande held a press conference in which he highlighted the strength of Saudi-French relations and characterized the Kingdom as a strategic partner. He noted the similarity between the Saudi and French positions on a number of issues, including the situations in Lebanon, Syria, Iran’s nuclear file, and the global oil market.
The meeting and medal awarding ceremony were attended on the Saudi side by Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz; Makkah Governor Prince Khalid Al-Faisal bin Abdulaziz; Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal; Minister of Interior Prince Ahmad bin Abdulaziz; Special Envoy of the King Prince Muqrin bin Abdulaziz; Chief of General Intelligence Prince Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz; Commander of the National Guard Prince Miteb bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz; Vice Foreign Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz; Minister of Commerce and Industry Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah; and Saudi Ambassador to France Dr. Mohammed Al-Asheikh. The French delegation included Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius; Minister of Foreign Trade Nicole Bricq; and French Ambassador to the Kingdom Bertrand Besancenot.