(MENAFN - Arab News) Defense Minister Prince Salman left Jazan yesterday after inspecting the combat readiness of armed forces stationed in the southern province. He also visited the forces deployed in Khoba, where Saudi forces clashed with Yemeni intruders two years ago.
"I am very happy to visit this important region," the prince said addressing the armed forces in Khoba on the Kingdom's border with Yemen. "I am happy to see people from different regions and tribes joining the armed forces to serve the nation," he said.
Prince Salman continued: "This country is yours and it belongs to people of all regions." He pledged that the Defense Ministry would exert all possible efforts for the progress and prosperity of the region.
On arrival at Khoba, the minister was received by Chief of Staff Gen. Hussein Al-Qubail, Commander of Southern Region Maj. Gen. Abdullah Al-Amri and Jazan Commander Maj. Gen. Hussein Maalawi.
Prince Salman was briefed on the Khoba force by Gen. Maalawi. He also met with the children of soldiers who died during the battle with Yemeni intruders as well as some tribal leaders.
Later, Jazan Gov. Prince Muhammad bin Nasser hosted a luncheon in honor of the minister at his palace. Addressing the ceremony, Ali Munqari, head of Shariah courts in the province, said Jazan people were happy over Prince Salman's visit to the region.
He congratulated Prince Salman on his appointment as defense minister by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah.
"Saudi Arabia is a country of peace and any statement negating this fact is injustice and a false accusation," he said. "We should not allow anybody to create division among the people of our country," he added. He also praised Prince Salman's humanitarian endeavors.
Prince Salman was accompanied by Prince Faisal bin Salman, chairman of Saudi Research & Marketing Group, Prince Bandar bin Salman, and Gen. Abdul Rahman Al-Binyan, director general of the minister's office.
Jazan Gov. Prince Muhammad said Prince Salman's tour was in line with his inspection tour of armed forces stationed in various parts of the Kingdom to understand their requirements.
He commended the government's support for the armed forces in Jazan and all other citizens of the region.
Abdullah Al-Suwaid, deputy governor of Jazan, highlighted the significance of Prince Salman's visit and said it reflected the cohesion between the Saudi leadership and people.
Prince Salman arrived here earlier yesterday from Abha where he was seen off by Asir Gov. Prince Faisal bin Khaled and other senior officials.