Saudis Angered By FM Qureshi’s ‘Offensive’ Posture While Meeting Ambassador

Source : The New Arab

Saudis Angered By FM Qureshi’s ‘Offensive’ Posture While Meeting Ambassador
The Pakistani FM has come under fire after crossing his legs during a meeting with his Saudi counterpart [The Above Picture]

Saudis have spoken of their outrage over the “insulting” seating position of Pakistan’s foreign minister during a meeting with the Saudi ambassador to Pakistan on Tuesday. Social media users in the kingdom slammed Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi for his posture when he received the ambassador, Nawaf bin Said al-Malki, in Islamabad.

Qureshi can be seen sitting with one leg crossed and the other pointing in Al-Malki’s direction, which was deemed offensive by many Saudis. The pair met to discuss current events in the region and “review bilateral relations between the two brotherly countries”, according to the Saudi Embassy in Pakistan.

But Saudis and Arabs saw the meeting in a different light.

“Pakistani foreign minister receives Saudi ambassador in Pakistan with unmatched hospitality,” said one user. “If there is no strong reason (medical) for the Pakistani foreign minister to receive the kingdom’s ambassador in this way, then this is the height of impudence and foolishness and ignorance of the basics of diplomatic protocol,” one Twitter user said. “Frankly, if I were one of the Saudi ambassadors, I would have left,”

Another social media user wrote: “Rude, thoughtless and undiplomatic behaviour of the [Pakistani] Minister of Foreign Affairs towards the [Saudi] ambassador… [I] admired how he kept silent about this insult!”

Others compared the “insulting” way Qureshi received Al-Malki to his “polite” demeanour while receiving other officials.

The Saudi Embassy posted a zoomed-in video of the encounter where Qureishi’s foot is not visible.

Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have deep diplomatic and military ties, but the countries’ relations have been strained in recent years after Islamabad reportedly refused a request by Riyadh to contribute troops to the Yemen war.

Pakistan was also frustrated by Riyadh’s refusal to back it during the most recent Kashmir crisis with India.

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