ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has asked Saudi Arabia for consular access to analyst and commentator Zaid Hamid, the Foreign Office said on Thursday.
“Pakistan embassy has approached the Saudi authorities to confirm the sentence awarded to him and has also asked for consular access to Zaid Hamid,” Foreign Office spokesperson Qazi Khalilullah said, during his weekly press briefing in Islamabad.
Read: Zaid Hamid sentenced to 8 years, 1,000 lashes in Saudi Arabia: report
On Wednesday, media reports suggested Hamid has been sentenced for eight years in jail and 1,000 lashes by a Saudi court for criticising the Saudi government. The analyst was arrested in the kingdom last week during a private visit.
On June 26, the Foreign Office confirmed Hamid had been arrested in Saudi Arabia.
Read: Zaid Hamid arrested in Saudi Arabia
‘Awaiting Britain’s response on MQM report’
Further, regarding BBC’s report on MQM receiving funding from India, Khalilullah said, “Pakistan has requested information about facts and contents of the BBC documentary from Britain. We are still awaiting the response of Britain.”
Last week, a BBC report claimed MQM was receiving financial and logistical support from India.
Read: BBC report: Military commanders to discuss ‘MQM-RAW’ nexus
Responding to a question regarding whether a meeting between PM Nawaz and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi is likely on the sidelines of SCO summit in Russia, the spokesperson said, “No side has contacted the other for the meeting.”
Reaffirm our commitment to good neighbourly relations with Afghanistan
Condemning all forms of terrorism, the spokesperson said Pakistan and Afghanistan are cooperating in the war against terrorism.
“A peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan is in Pakistan's best interest. Noninterference in internal affairs of Afghanistan is the key pillar of Pakistan Afghan policy,” he added.