‘Welcome, Habibi Nawaz’ signboards greet PM Abbasi in Saudi Arabia

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RIYADH – Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi was greeted upon his arrival in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday, his first official visit abroad since assuming office, by signboards saying ‘Welcome, Habibi Nawaz’ at the airport.

On his day long visit, the prime minister also met Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman Al-Saud, who also referred to him as ‘Brother Nawaz’.

“I was told by Mian saab that they would treat me just they would have treated him, because I will be treating them as Mian saab would’ve treated then, but I wasn’t expected it so such an extent,” PM Abbasi said while talking to The Dependent.

According to the PM House no meeting has been scheduled with King Salman who excused himself saying, “Sorry, Habibi Nawaz I’m out of kingdom, but you know the drill”.

As per the PM House statement, PM Abbasi will “repeat word for word the transcript sent to him by Nawaz Sharif.”

“Thankfully I’ve been practicing my imitation of Mian saab for the past three weeks,” Abbasi told The Dependent. “I’m definitely getting better at it.

The premier is accompanied by Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, who were referred to with the same names as during their previous Saudi trips.

“Abd-e-Nawaz, this is where you sign,” a Saudi official told Asif and Dar putting agreements in Arabic in front of them.