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King Salman leaves after state visit to M'sia

King Salman leaves after state visit to M'sia

The visit is the first by a Saudi monarch in nearly half a century and will see the two nations sign an agreement to fight terrorism, according to the Saudi envoy to Indonesia.

Hishammuddin, who was the Minister-in-Attendance during the visit of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, said he, himself, had reviewed the cooperation and the Malaysian Chief of Navy was handling the details. He is reportedly coming with an entourage of 1,500 people including princes, ministers and businessmen.

For a nine day trip to Indonesia, the King of Saudi Arabia has packed 506 tons of luggage including a set of elevators and two limousines. However, the future seems bleak for the nation ever since 2014 which marked a drop in global oil prices, leaving the Saudi kingdom with a huge budget deficit and billions of dollars in debt to private firms, particularly construction companies.

King Salman, 81, said he hoped the visit would "contribute to the improvement of the bilateral relationship between our two countries", while Mr Widodo hailed the visit as "historic".

Had King Salman been flying with a commercial airline he'd have needed 23,000 bags to split his gear into typical 20kg suitcases.

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The Asian tour will last one month and he will visit several states.

Saudi Arabia's King Salman and Indonesian President Joko Widodo walk under umbrellas in heavy rain upon arrival at the Presidential Palace in Bogor, West Java, Indonesia March 1, 2017.

After Indonesia, he will travel to Brunei, Japan, China and the Maldives as part of the tour, which is mostly aimed at strengthening economic ties.

King Salman was also conferred an Honorary Doctor of Letters degree by Universiti Malaya and an Honorary Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science (Islam and Wasatiyyah) degree as well as a Lifetime Outstanding Achievement Award by the International Islamic University of Malaysia.

It has deployed at least 9,000 police and military for the 12-day visit, with roads closed to traffic and snipers positioned along the route of the king's convoy.


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