Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered at on 24 October 2001.

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Photo of Hywel Williams Hywel Williams Shadow PC Spokesperson (Work and Pensions), Shadow PC Spokesperson (Health)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the impact on relations with (a) Saudi Arabia and (b) Pakistan of the bombing of Afghanistan.

Photo of Ben Bradshaw Ben Bradshaw Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

Saudi Arabia was quick to condemn the 11 September terrorist attacks in the US. It fully supports the international campaign against terrorism. Crown Prince Abdullah most recently reiterated this to the Prime Minister on 9 October. Saudi Arabia remains a close ally in the region and a long-standing friend of the UK.

We also applaud Pakistan's decision to back international action against terrorism. We have underlined that the campaign in Afghanistan is against terror and not against Islam or the Afghan people. We recognise that this reassurance is important to Pakistan. Pakistan is a valuable ally. Its decision to support the coalition has served to strengthen our bilateral relationship.

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