KABUL: Saudi Ambassador to Afghanistan Jassim bin Mohammad Al-Khalidi said on Tuesday that the Kingdom has made no new pledges of financial aid to the war-torn country following talks with Afghan Senate chief Fazl Hadi Muslimyar, putting to rest media reports which claimed otherwise.
“I gave him a review of what we have been doing in terms of our development projects in Afghanistan. There has been no new pledge at all, he misunderstood this,” Al-Khalidi told Arab News.
The meeting between Muslimyar and Al-Khalidi took place on Sunday.
Hours after the meeting, a Senate statement reported Saudi pledges of “$30 million for constructing a hospital in Kabul,” plans to “build 100 madrasas,” and an allocation of “$54 million for Afghanistan’s fight against coronavirus.”
Several local media outlets reported the news, quoting the Senate as a source. When contacted by Arab News on Tuesday, both the Saudi Embassy in Kabul and Muslimyar were unavailable for comment.
Muslimyar’s office, however, referred to a statement posted on the Senate’s Facebook page, which issued a correction.
“There was a misunderstanding during the translation with regards to some words, particularly on the issue of building of 100 madrasas,” it said.
Meanwhile, the Saudi embassy said on Twitter on Monday that the meeting had “focused exclusively on issues related to improving bilateral relations between the two countries.”
It added: “The embassy would like to stress that some media reporting on this meeting made reference to issues that were not discussed. We urge all media outlets to verify the source of their reporting and to make sure that their accounts are accurate prior to publication.”