Saudi ambassador-designate to Germany, Prince Faisal Bin Farhan Al Saud, presented his credentials to German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier during a reception on Wednesday at the presidential palace in Berlin, marking another phase in the long-standing relations between the two countries.
His appointment as ambassador would help improve ties and restore them to how they were before Sigmar Gabriel served as Germany’s foreign minister.
In November 2017, Saudi Arabia recalled its then ambassador to Germany following Gabriel’s criticism of the Kingdom for its alleged complicity in Lebanese Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri’s resignation.
Prince Faisal has spent a great deal of his life outside the Kingdom. Born in Germany, he was educated in the US and speaks English and German. When King of Saudi Arabia Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud assigned him the post, he responded in German to those who congratulated him.
S.H. @FaisalbinFarhan Botschafter des Hüters der Beiden Heiligen Stätten in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, überreichte dem Präsidenten der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, Herrn Dr. Frank-Walter Steinmeier, am heutigen Tage im Schloss Bellevue in Berlin sein Beglaubigungsschreiben. pic.twitter.com/S8N7m2nxZk— KSA Botschaft in DE (@KSAembassyDE) March 27, 2019
German and international observers expect that Prince Faisal’s knowledge of the German language will greatly contribute to strengthening ties between the two countries.
The prince serves as a member of the board of directors of the Saudi Arabia Military Industries Corporation and as Chairman of the Board of Al Salam Aerospace Industries. He has also worked as a consultant in the Saudi royal court.
أبارك لأخي الكبير الأمير فيصل بن فرحان تقديم أوراق اعتماده لفخامة رئيس جمهورية ألمانيا— سلمان بن ناصر أبو حبيب الشثري SALMAN AL SHATHRI (@Salmanalsh3) March 28, 2019
My congrats to @FaisalbinFarhan for presenting his credentials to H.E President of German Republic. I am sure that he will be an essential element in strengthening the relations@GermanyinKSA pic.twitter.com/aD7FUyPfut
German dailies quoted a member of the German Council on Foreign Relations Sebastian Sons as saying that appointing Prince Faisal sends a significant message from Saudi Arabia. Sons’ remarks indicate that the envoy’s post in Berlin is critical.
His appointment came following increased calls by German politicians to enhance military cooperation between the two countries.
On March 25, Joachim Pfeiffer, an expert in economic affairs in the Christian Democratic Union of Germany, told the German Press Agency that it was wrong to take a unilateral decision on the national level by stopping arms exports to Saudi Arabia. He called on the German government to coordinate a mutual policy on the matter with its partners in the EU.
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