Published: Fri, March 09, 2018
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Saudi crown prince pledges to work for interfaith tolerance

Saudi crown prince pledges to work for interfaith tolerance

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met the head of the Anglican church in London on Thursday, promising to promote interfaith dialogue as part of his domestic reforms, the British faith leader's office said.

The order came two months after BAE announced around 2,000 job cuts because it needed to slow Typhoon production to meet reduced demand in the short term.

"The Crown Prince's visit has opened a new chapter in our two countries' historic relationship", British Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said.

The visit has been strongly condemned by thousands of protesters in various parts of the United Kingdom, who held protest rallies to slam the Arab country's war crimes in Yemen.

"This is a positive step towards agreeing a contract for our valued partner".

He added: "We are committed to supporting the Kingdom as it modernises the Saudi Armed Forces and develops key industrial capabilities critical to the delivery of Vision 2030".

That has provided a controversial backdrop to the warm diplomatic welcome for Prince Mohammed, with hundreds turning out on Wednesday to protest arms sales and Saudi Arabia's role in the Yemen war.

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"If agreed, this shameful deal will be celebrated in the palaces of Riyadh and by the arms companies who will profit from it, but it will mean even greater destruction for the people of Yemen", said Andrew Smith of the Campaign Against Arms Trade.

"Yemen has endured three years of bombardment and one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world".

May's government has remained defiant in the face of growing pressure to stop arms exports to Saudi Arabia, defending the sales amid evidence of war crimes and civilian deaths in Yemen.

Speaking in London at the launch of The War On Children, a report into crimes against children in warzones, Mr Watkins said: "It has become acceptable to operate humanitarian blockades which, if not explicitly created to starve children and harm children, will have that inevitable effect".

"On Iran, UK PM May and Saudi crown prince agreed on importance of working together to counter Iran's destabilizing regional activity", it said.

Although May noted during the PMQ that she would raise humanitarian concerns about Yemen in his meeting with bin Salman, she underlined her government's support for the Saudi-led war.

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