King Salman Chairs Cabinet Session
The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz chaired the Cabinet's session at Al-Yamamah Palace in Riyadh on Monday afternoon. At the outset of the session, King Salman briefed the Cabinet on the results of his talks with President Macky Sall of the Senegal; President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan, the message received from President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir of Sudan, the telephone calls with Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India Narendra Modi, President Dr. Ashraf Ghani Zai of Afghanistan, U.S. President Barack Obama, and British Prime Minister David Cameron.
The Cabinet was than briefed on the latest situations and developments in the region, reaffirmed the Kingdom's firm positions towards them, and reviewed the great efforts exerted by coalition forces on all axes to destroy the capabilities of the Houthi militias and defeat their conspiracies against Yemen.
The Cabinet thanked and expressed its appreciation to the Yemeni community in the Kingdom for their support of Operation Decisive Storm.
The Cabinet renewed the Kingdom's stand with every possible effort in order to put an end to the Syrian tragedy and commended the results of the Third Pledging Conference which took place in Kuwait City to raise funds for the humanitarian needs in Syria. The Kingdom total aid to the Syrian people since 2011 totaled over $600 million.
The Council of Ministers welcomed the formal announcement by the International Criminal Court on the State of Palestine's accession to it as a full member. The cabinet stressed that the accession of the State of Palestine to the International Criminal Court strengthens its presence in the international field to preserve the rights of the Palestinian people.
On the framework agreement that was reached in the city of Lausanne, Switzerland, between the major powers and Iran over its nuclear program, the Council of Ministers expressed hope that a final, binding and definitive agreement would be reached leading to the strengthening of security and stability in the region and the world. The Cabinet renewed the Kingdom’s support the right of peaceful use of nuclear energy by regional states in accordance with the standards and procedures of the International Atomic Energy Agency and under its supervision and in line with the Arab League's decision aimed at making the Middle East and the Arab Gulf region free of all weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons. In this regard, the Cabinet stressed that the promotion of security and stability in the region requires a commitment to the principles of good neighborliness and non-interference in the internal affairs of the Arab countries and respect of their sovereignty.
The Cabinet condemned the terrorist on University of Garissa in Kenya, expressing condolences to the government and people of Kenya and the families of the victims.
On internal affairs, the Council of Ministers thanked King Salman for his care for Qur’an and its distribution and for honoring the people concerned with it.
The Cabinet reviewed the April 1 announcement by Moody's Investors Service of the Kingdom’s credit rating. Moody’s affirmed Saudi Arabia's Aa3 long-term issuer rating and maintained a stable outlook on the rating. The Cabinet also reviewed Fitch’s AA ratings of Saudi Arabia's sovereign rating, stressing that the success of the Kingdom to maintain its high credit classification despite the economic pressures, reflects the strength of the Saudi economy and its ability to counter periodic fluctuations and reflects the success of the Kingdom's economic policy as well.
The Cabinet then approved the following: reformation of the Military Service Council, headed by the Prime Minister and the membership of: Deputy Prime Minister (As Deputy Chairman; Minister of National Guard; Minister of Interior; Minister of Defense; Minister of Finance; Chief of General Intelligence; Commander of Royal Guard and three members appointed by a Royal Decree; the headquarters agreement between the Saudi Arabia and the Arab Organization for Tourism, signed in Taif on 14/07/1435 AH; a number of measures concerning uncultivated and illegally possessed lands; and authorization of the Minister of Defense, or his deputy, to negotiate draft agreement with Spain on mutual protection of confidential information in the field of defense and sign it, before submitting the final signed version for completion of regular procedures.