Algerian President Bouteflika unable to receive Saudi crown prince Salman due to flu: Presidency
ALGIERS – Reuters
Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia received the prince in the capital Algiers, the state news agency APS said.
Before the summit, the heir to the throne of the world's top oil exporter had visited the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Egypt and Tunisia.
The crown prince is on his first trip abroad since the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, which has strained Saudi Arabia's ties with the West and battered the prince's image abroad.
Saudi Arabia has said the prince had no prior knowledge of the murder. After offering numerous contradictory explanations, Riyadh said last month that Khashoggi had been killed and his body dismembered when negotiations to persuade him to return to Saudi Arabia failed.
Algerian-Saudi investments and trade relations, especially in the oil and petrochemical sectors, will be discussed during the two-day visit, APS said on Nov. 1.
Algiers also has strong ties with Qatar, with which Saudi Arabia and three other Arab states severed trade and transport ties in June 2017, accusing it of supporting terrorism and Iran. Qatar denies the allegations.
The Saudi prince is unlikely to face protests over the murder as he did in Tunisia, as demonstrations are banned in Algiers.
But a group of prominent journalists and intellectuals has written an open letter opposing his visit, saying it is "unethical and politically inappropriate."