Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Ibn Abdul Aziz, presiding today over the regular weekly meeting of the Council of Ministers, was briefed on arrangements being made by the various ministries and governmental departments concerned, for the upcoming pilgrimage season of 1418 H, in order to realize the optimum level of comfort, tranquillity and security for the "Guests of Allah" [the pilgrims], and prayed Almighty God to enable this country and its people to serve the pilgrimage in security and tranquillity, urging all concerned parties to unify their efforts to shoulder their responsibilities.
King Fahd then welcomed to the Kingdom former Iranian President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, currently chairman of the Expediency Council for the Islamic Republic of Iran, and his accompanying delegation, and expressed his expectations for building up constructive links among Muslim countries. Turning to the Kingdom's position concerning the current oil situation in the international market and the decline in oil prices, the King reiterated that the responsibility lies on the shoulder of all oil exporters both within and outside OPEC.
The cabinet then expressed its optimism over the announcement that UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan had signed an agreement with Iraq which conformed with the relevant security council resolutions, and affirmed that the peaceful solution to this crisis is the optimum way for safeguarding the lives of the Iraqi people. Moreover, Saudi Arabia reiterates the necessity of honoring these resolutions, and that their implementation is linked to the security and stability of the region. Information Minister Dr. Al-Farsi stated: "The Saudi Arabian government hopes that when the security council approves this agreement, it will immediately initiate a similar resolve and determination to push ahead the peace process in line with international legality and full compliance to UN resolutions as contained in the relevant accords, in order to enhance security and stability in the region."
The cabinet went on to pass a number of resolutions, including approval of the agreement between Saudi Arabia and Morocco in the area of youth and sports which was drafted in Casablanca on March 2, 1997.