Pak troops in S Arabia for advisory, training purposes: Dastgir


Zahid Chaudhary


The Senate was informed on Monday that Pakistani troops being dispatched to Saudi Arabia are only meant for imparting training to Saudi security personnel and they will not entangle in Yemen war.
Giving a policy statement in the House, Defence Minister Khurram Dastgir said that currently around sixteen hundred Pakistani troops are on deputation in Saudi Arabia. He said the Prime Minister has approved deputing additional Pakistani troops to Saudi Arabia for training and advisory purposes. He said that the assistance being rendered to Saudi Arabia is a continuation of the on-going support and within the confines of joint Parliamentary resolution of April 2015.
Khurram Dastgir said that the planned training and advisory contingent has yet not been dispatched to Saudi Arabia. He said that the contingent will have strength of over one thousand troops of all ranks and will be dispatched shortly. He said contingent deputed in Saudi Arabia will perform its training and advisory mission while remaining within the geographical boundaries of the Kingdom.
The Minister said that Pakistan has also trained Saudi Armed forces personnel in various training institutions of the country. He said that nearly ten thousand Saudi security personnel have got training from Pakistan.
He said training of Saudi forces is governed by 1982 bilateral protocol regarding the deputation of Pakistan’s Armed Forces’ personnel. He said that Pakistan and Saudi Arabia also hold joint defence exercises regularly.
The upper house on Monday also unanimously passed a bill seeking to decriminalize attempted suicide and providing treatment and protection to those who try to end their lives.
The state should treat those who seek to take their own lives like a mother, the bill argues. “A person attempts suicide only in a state of extreme frustration,” it says, demanding that the state safeguard the victims of mental illnesses and depression.

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