JHELUM - Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Gen Raheel Sharif on Friday reiterated that any threat to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Saudi Arabia will evoke a strong response from Pakistan.

“Pakistan and Saudi Arabia enjoy strong and brotherly relations which have a long history of deep rooted cooperation,” the army chief was quoted as saying in a statement issued by the military’s media wing Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) on Friday.

Gen Raheel’s comments came during his visit to the National Counter-Terrorism Centre, Pabbi near Jhelum, where he witnessed the concluding session of “Pak-Saudi Joint Training Exercise Al-Shihab”.

“Al-Shihab focused on counter-terrorism training of the special operation forces of Pakistan and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia which included cordon and search operations, airdropping and heli-lifting of special forces for operations against terrorists’ activities and their hideouts,” the press release said.

The army chief lauded the dedication, motivation and professionalism of the troops who participated in the joint military drills. “This exercise signifies the joint effort of our two nations against terrorism and we will defeat this menace in all its forms and manifestation,” Gen Raheel reiterated.

A six-member high-level delegation of the Saudi military, headed by General Mufleh Bin Saleem Al-Otaibi, commander special forces of Saudi Arabia, was also present on the occasion.

Earlier, upon his arrival the army chief was received by Lt-Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa, Inspector General Training and Evaluation.