ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: The Saudi government has denied that it is ‘funding the extremist mindset in Pakistan through its financial support for religious seminaries’.
“A section of the media has been propagating a false impression that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is funding the extremist mindset in Pakistan through its financial support for religious seminaries,” a press statement issued by the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Islamabad on Monday said.
“Whenever any seminary, mosque or charity organisations request the kingdom for financial assistance, the embassy refers the matter to the Government of Pakistan through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for examining suitability of the applicant,” the statement added.
“When the ministry of foreign affairs informs the embassy in writing that the financial assistance is in the interest of public welfare, the assistance is provided to the applicant … The assistance has always been beyond any sectarian considerations,” it further said.
“As Saudi Arabia is closely working with the government of Pakistan counter terror measures, it is very conscious that philanthropic and humanitarian assistance does not fall into the hands of extremist elements.”
Last month, the federal minister for inter-provincial coordination Riaz Hussain Pirzada accused the Saudi government of creating instability across the Muslim world including Pakistan through distribution of money for promoting its ideology.
In his address at a two-day ‘Ideas Conclave’ organized by the Jinnah Institute think tank in Islamabad on January 20, the federal minister said that the time has come to stop the influx of Saudi money into Pakistan.