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Not funding 'extremist mindset' in Pakistan: Saudi Arabia

Not funding extremist mindset in Pakistan: Saudi Arabia

Islamabad: Saudi Arabia Monday denied funding of what it called the extremist mindset through its financial support to religious seminaries in Pakistan.

"A section of the media has been propagating a false impression that Saudi Arabia is funding the extremist mindset in Pakistan through its financial support for religious seminaries," Dawn quoted a press statement issued by the Saudi embassy in Islamabad.

"Whenever any seminary, mosque or charity organisation requests the Saudi Arabia for financial assistance, the embassy refers the matter to the Pakistani government through the foreign ministry for examining suitability of the applicant," the statement added.

It went on to say that only "when the foreign ministry informs the embassy in writing that the financial assistance is in the interest of public welfare, the assistance is provided to the applicant... The assistance has always been beyond any sectarian considerations".

The Saudi embassy's statement comes weeks after Inter-Provincial Coordination (IPC) Minister of Pakistan Riaz Hussain Pirzada accused the Saudi government of creating instability across the Muslim world by distributing money in order to promote religious extremism.

The minister had said that the time had come to stop the influx of Saudi money into Pakistan, which he claimed had a destabilising influence.

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