Syrian president receives invitation from Saudi king to visit Riyadh
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad received Wednesday an invitation from Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdul-Aziz to visit Riyadh, Xinhua reported, referring to the official SANA news agency.
The invitation was presented by visiting Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal during a meeting here, in which the two sides discussed the Arab situation and the challenges in the region, particularly in light of the divisions witnessed recently on the Arab arena.
"The meeting was constructive and positive, with Prince Saud relaying the greetings of King of Saudi Arabia Abdullah bin Abdul- Aziz Al Saud and an invitation to President Assad to visit Saudi Arabia," SANA said.
During the meeting, Assad affirmed that Arabs must find a way to solve disputes amicably and in a manner based on the common points among them, which in itself will reduce differences, said the report.
"There are essential issues that the Arabs must not disagree on, which are the issues of Arab rights and higher interests," said Assad, stressing that inter-Arab relations must always remain in service of the Arab peoples and enable Arab countries to uphold their duties, particularly towards the Palestinians and Iraq.
Both sides also discussed inter-Palestinian reconciliation and both countries' determination to support it and support Arab reconciliation to benefit all the Arabs.
Faisal arrived here earlier in the day, who was welcomed by his Syrian counterpart Walid al-Muallem at the Damascus airport.
Faisal's visit signalled further improvement of ties between the two countries, which have been chilled since the assassination of former Lebanese Premier Rafik Hariri in 2005. Syria was widely blamed for the killing, but it denied any involvement.
Syria and Saudi Arabia began to mend fences in January as Assad and King Abdullah met briefly on the sidelines of the first Arab Economic Summit held in Kuwait.
In February, the two leaders exchanged verbal messages to each other carried by their envoys during respective visits to the two countries' capitals.