The Cabinet, chaired by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman at Al-Yamamah Palace, on Monday reaffirmed Saudi Arabia’s continued support for Palestinian refugees out of the Kingdom’s belief that it is a religious and humanitarian duty.
The Cabinet reviewed a number of issues and the latest developments at regional and inteational levels, including Saudi Arabia’s affirmation at the UN of its continued support for Palestinian refugees and for the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) to achieve their humanitarian objectives.
The Cabinet reiterated that Saudi Arabia will continue to provide care to more than five million Palestinians; the Kingdom tops the list of main donors to their cause.
The Cabinet also discussed the speech delivered at the UN by the Kingdom’s representative on behalf of the Arab group on Article 50 on the report of the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people, during which it expressed its deep conce about the escalation of violence, acts of provocation and aggression by Israeli occupation forces and terrorist settlers against Palestinians.
The Cabinet deplored Israel’s persistence in challenging UN resolutions, and reiterated that the Kingdom welcomes the French initiative calling for an inteational peace conference, according to the terms of reference of the peace process, particularly the Arab Peace Initiative.
The Cabinet also expressed appreciation for the measures taken by the first meeting of the Commission of Economic and Development Affairs of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), established upon the directive by King Salman with the aim of enhancing joint Gulf action.
Acting Minister of Culture and Information Dr. Essam bin Saad bin Saeed said that the Cabinet fully supports the view of Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, second deputy premier, minister of defense and chairman of the Council of Economic and Development Affairs, that the GCC countries should unite to become a strong bloc. The Cabinet endorsed the views of the deputy crown prince, who said that the GCC has the opportunity to be the sixth biggest economy in the world if its members work properly in the coming years and take advantage of opportunities in this era of economic fluctuations.
The Cabinet commended the Council of Economic Development Affairs for having decided, during its meeting, to have the public treasury settle the debts owed to the private sector before the end of the current fiscal year.
The King briefed the Cabinet on the phone call he made to US President-elect Donald Trump upon winning the presidential election, during which he said that the Kingdom is looking forward to enhancing historical and strategic relations with the US and working together to achieve peace and stability in the Middle East and the world.
He also briefed the Cabinet about his talks with US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford, with whom he discussed bilateral cooperation and recent developments in the region.
Earlier, at the start of the meeting, the members of Cabinet presented condolences to King Salman and the royal family on the death of Prince Turki bin Abdulaziz. The king thanked and expressed appreciation to the leaders, envoys, princes, scholars, senior officials and citizens who offered their condolences.
The Cabinet also condemned the attacks that targeted the French Embassy in Athens, the German Consulate in Mazar-e-Sharif in Afghanistan and the bombing in the Hab area of Balochistan, Pakistan.
It approved an agreement between the Kingdom and Gabon doing away with double taxation on income and preventing tax evasion, agreements of cooperation between the Kingdom, and Mexico and Mozambique, and an agreement on the recruitment of domestic helpers from Bangladesh. -Arab news