Saudi Arabia honours Indian envoy

July 12th, 2011 - 9:52 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh Riyadh, July 12 (IANS) Saudi Arabia has conferred the King Abdulaziz Medal of First Class on Indian Ambassador to Riyadh Talmiz Ahmad for his contribution to the promotion of bilateral relations.

Ahmad, who was presented the award in Jeddah Sunday, is the first Indian diplomat to be conferred such an honour by Saudi Arabia.

The medal was presented by Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal. It comprises a decorative badge and a certificate signed by King Abdullah.

“Indo-Saudi relations have been transformed into a strategic partnership with the signing of the Delhi Declaration during the landmark visit of King Abdullah to New Delhi in 2006, and the return visit of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh last year,” he said.

The ambassador thanked the Saudi leadership for taking care of about two million Indian workers in the country.

He said the honour was “the result of a commitment at the highest level to pursue the realisation of strategic partnership between Riyadh and New Delhi”.

“Mine has been a modest role in this endeavour, in which a large number of people have contributed both from India and Saudi Arabia,” he added.

Ahmad, who is retiring shortly, was first appointed India’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia in January 2000. He also became the ambassador to Oman in July 2003.

Ahmad has also served in several countries of the region including the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Kuwait, Iraq and Yemen.

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