Saturday, January 14, 2006

Saudi King to Discuss Iran, Ties with Israel on Delhi Visit

India Defence:
Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, who will be chief guest during the Republic Day parade, will talk to Indian leaders on vital issues concerning Iran's WMD programme and opening a communications channel with Israel in the changing circumstances. The Saudi king, who will embark on a five-nation trip commencing 21 January, is keen to open a liaison relationship with Israel and seeks Indian assistance in this.

King Abdullah is now sensing the heat of Islamic extremism in his own country to an extent that he has told his close aides to find an immediate solution to it.

The Al-Qaeda and other terrorist organisations are repeatedly issuing warnings to him over religious and political matters concerning the future of the Saudi royal family and their dominant role in defining Islam.

Saudi Arabia is looking ahead to Indian and Israeli cooperation to combat international Islamic terrorism and has suggested that India be given membership of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) having the world's second largest Muslim population.

Though the proposal was withdrawn under pressure from Pakistan and the UAE, the Saudis believe India can not only assist in fighting terrorism, it can also be a bridge to building relations with Israel.

The Saudi king, who will make an official visit to India in five decades, is all set to raise the issue of Iran's WMD programme, and he thinks India can put pressure on Iran to abandon its weapons’ programme which will upset the balance of power in the region. READ MORE