The tourism minister of Syria’s Assad regime landed in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday. The visit by the regime’s minister came as the first of its kind to the Kingdom since 2011. According to the official Syrian news agency, Tourism Minister Muhammad Rami Martini is to attend the 47th meeting of the World Tourism Committee for the Middle East. The meeting is scheduled for May 26-27 and will be held in Riyadh.
Minister Martini’s visit came upon an official invitation from the Saudi Tourism Ministry and the World Tourism Organization Committee for the Middle East.
The visit also came amid speculation that officials from both Saudi Arabia and the Assad regime held secret talks. Earlier in May, some reports claiming that a high-level Saudi delegation, headed by the intelligence service chief Khalid Al Humaidan, traveled to Syria to hold talks with Syrian President Bashar Al Assad was circulating earlier in May.
It was claimed that issues, including the reopening of the Saudi embassy in Damascus and Syria’s return to the Arab League, had been discussed during the visit.
Saudi-Syrian relations have been ruptured by Riyadh after it withdrew its ambassador from Damascus and froze diplomatic relations with the Assad regime in 2011 when the Syrian revolution began.