1999 News Story

French Defense minister in Riyadh

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz received in Riyadh yesterday

Defense Minister of the Republic of France Alain Richard, who conveyed to King Fahd

greetings from French President Jacques Chirac. Minister Richard is on a two-day official

visit to the Kingdom. Second Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector-General Prince Sultan Bin Abdul Aziz also received Minister Richard yesterday, and discussed with him matters of mutual concern and the development of military cooperation between the two countries.

At a press conference, Prince Sultan highlighted the friendly relations that exist between

Saudi Arabia and France, based on a mutual desire for peace, and involving fruitful

cooperation between the Saudi and the French armed forces. He added that the foundations

for the Saudi-French friendship had been laid down by King Faisal and the President de

Asked if their talks had touched on negotiation on French tanks, Prince Sultan said this is

part of Saudi-French military cooperation, and that there are committees assigned to

discuss such topics.
On the forthcoming visit to Algeria of Deputy Prime Minister and Commander of the National

Guard Crown Prince Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz, currently on a private visit to Morocco, Prince

Sultan declared: "We are not mediators, but we are brothers to Morocco and Algeria, as we

are to all other Arab countries. There is no mediation, but there are efforts for improving

Moroccan-Algerian relations and clearing the air among all the North African countries.
Concerning the statement of Minister of the Interior Prince Nayef Bin Abdul Aziz on the

matter of the extradition from the United States of the Saudi citizen accused of being

involved in the explosion incident in Al-Khobar, Prince Sultan declared:  "Prince Nayef,

the person concerned with this issue, has said what should be said. The Saudi citizen, I

believe, will arrive in his own country and Islamic Shariah [law] will take its course." 

He added: "We pay no heed to those who try to cast doubts on the fairness of the Saudi

judicial system."