Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal arrived in Cairo today on a brief visit, which he described as complementary to the talks recently held between Second Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector-General Prince Sultan Ibn Abdul Aziz, and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. Commenting on the latest crisis between Iraq and the United Nations, Prince Saud remarked that all Arab countries are concerned with enabling the Iraqi people to avoid harm, and expressed surprise at its timing, when Arab countries are closing ranks regarding the Middle East peace process.
At the press conference today following a meeting with President Mubarak, Prince Saud stated that the Kingdom would prefer a diplomatic solution to the Iraqi-UN crisis when asked whether Saudi Arabia would agree to the launching of a strike against Iraq to force it to reconsider its latest decision. He expressed the belief that there is a consensus among Arab people that Saddam Hussein should to rescind his decision to cut ties with the United Nations. In response to a further question, Prince Saud denied that U.S. Secretary of Defense William Cohen had made demands during his recent visit to the Kingdom.
Commenting on Saudi-Iranian rapprochement, Prince Saud expressed the belief that improvement of Iranian relations with its neighbors, particularly the Arabian Gulf states, would yield positive returns for all.