Malaysiakini NEWS

Agong departs for home after special visit to Saudi Arabia

Bernama  |  Published:  |  Modified:

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah (photo, left) departs for home after a successful three-day special visit to Saudi Arabia.

His Majesty was received by the governor of Jeddah, Prince Mashel Majed AbdulAziz at the Royal Terminal of King Abdulaziz International Airport here, followed by a brief meeting before departing in a special aircraft at 8pm local time Sunday (1am today).

Accompanying His Majesty in the aircraft were his son Tengku Amir Nasser, Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah and Foreign Ministry secretary-general Muhammad Shahrul Ikram.

Earlier on Sunday, in an audience with Saudi Arabia's King Salman Abdulaziz Al-Saud (photo, right), Sultan Abdullah had expressed his gratitude and satisfaction over the visit.

The inaugural visit of Sultan Abdullah as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong was at the invitation of King Salman to further strengthen the fraternal bond which has existed since 1957.

Sultan Abdullah arrived in Saudi Arabia on Friday for a three-day special visit.

His Majesty's itinerary began with his arrival in Madinah, where Sultan Abdullah visited the tomb of Prophet Muhammad at Nabawi Mosque and performed Friday prayer, before departing for Jeddah on Saturday and completing Umrah in Makkah on the same day.

When asked to comment on the visit before departing with His Majesty, Saifuddin said the main objective of the visit was to have an audience with King Salman which took place today.

"In the meeting, Agong expressed his gratitude to the Saudi Arabian government, which has given us so many privileges in terms of haj quota, and Malaysia is among the first countries selected by Saudi Arabia to use e-clearance which began in 2017.

“The meeting is symbolic of the close ties existing between the two countries,” he said.

Yesterday, Comptroller of the Royal Household Ahmad Fadil Samsudin said during the audience both majesties spoke on further enhancing existing bilateral relations and cooperation between both countries, particularly in terms of haj.

"Tuanku had also conveyed greetings from Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, to which King Salman expressed his gratitude and extended his invitation to Dr Mahathir to visit Saudi Arabia the next time," he told the Malaysian media after the closed-door audience session ended yesterday.

Meanwhile, Ahmad Fadil said King Salman had expressed the Saudi government's readiness to host a Joint Commission Meeting (JCM), which would focus on economic cooperation. The last Malaysia-Saudi Arabia JCM was held in 2004.

- Bernama

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