Swedish foreign minister forgot to look within

Updated 18 March 2015
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Swedish foreign minister forgot to look within

Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom should first have paid attention to the severe criticism made by the UN Human Rights Council on the serious violations committed against the rights of minorities in Sweden, including long detention periods and isolation cells in their prisons.
Perhaps, Wallstrom’s ignorance of the concept of the purity of the human rights encouraged her to level allegations against the Kingdom in the Swedish Parliament, which prompted the Arab League to condemn her statements altogether.
Saudi Arabia recalled its ambassador to Sweden after that country’s outrageous intervention in the Kingdom’s internal affairs.
Wallstrom, whose country is contesting with Italy and the Netherlands to win one of the 10 non-permanent seats to the Security Council, ignored the provisions of the United Nations Declaration No. 36/103 endorsed on Dec. 9, 1981, stipulating that it is not permissible to intervene, directly or indirectly, for any reason whatsoever, in the internal and external affairs of other member states of the UN.
Before making any false accusations against Saudi Arabia’s supposed violation of human rights, the Swedish minister should have paid attention to Sweden’s violations of human rights, which were revealed in the report at the Human Rights Council last week in Geneva. The report pointed out the failure of the Swedish government to deal with hate crimes, discrimination and violation of minority rights.
The report warned that this was the second time that the Human Rights Council issued a warning to Sweden. The report also coincided with the statement of Swedish lawyer Yuan Vesteson, an activist of a civil rights defense organization, noting that the state of Sweden was weak in dealing with racial discrimination cases. It also emphasized that there were many irregularities in its way of dealing with hate crimes, while statistics indicated that only a few of the large number of such crimes were legally dealt with.
Before denouncing Saudi Arabia, the Swedish minister should have taken notice of the severe criticism brought up by the human rights organization on the violations committed by her country regarding the rights of minorities, including prolonged detentions of minority inmates in isolation cells. The entire world knows about Sweden’s discriminatory treatment of the Roma minority community, especially since this group has been marginalized over centuries and was at the receiving end of innumerable police assaults.
Wallstrom should also have acknowledged the absence of accountability in civilian institutions that failed to prevent 300 Swedish citizen from joining the Islamic State. According to a testimony given by the chief of Sweden’s Intelligence last November, “these young people have crossed the limits of humanitarian conduct in Sweden for committing terrorist acts.”
The Swedish minister, who worries about the Saudi human rights, should also have seen a Swedish TV program footage of one of the surveillance cameras in “Malmo” Central Station on the brutal police treatment of two nine-year-old Swedish children last month.
That is why the Swedish foreign minister should reconsider her views on the Kingdom’s human rights record.
— Al-Watan


13,230 families benefit from ‘Sakani’ program in Saudi Arabia

More than 157,000 families benefited from the program during 2018. (SPA)
Updated 17 June 2019
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13,230 families benefit from ‘Sakani’ program in Saudi Arabia

  • More than 157,000 families benefited from the program during 2018

RIYADH: The Ministry of Housing’s “Sakani” program has helped 13,230 families registered on its Real Estate Development Fund list with housing options and finance solutions during May.
This includes 5,835 families who live in their own homes, bringing the total number of families benefiting from the program in different regions of the Kingdom since the start of the year to 68,195.
The Sakani program announced the names of beneficiaries and their national ID numbers through the link https://sakani-names.housing.sa or via the program portal.
More than 157,000 families benefited from the program during 2018.
Ministry of Housing spokesman Saif Al-Suwailem said that Sakani continues to provide its services to beneficiaries according to their needs and abilities. The ministry is keen to provide better services in line with the “Eskan” program, one of the Saudi Vision 2030 initiatives that aims to raise the proportion of residential ownership to 70 percent by 2030.
As part of Sakani’s efforts to provide suitable housing options, the program began to implement 53 new housing projects in different regions of the Kingdom, characterized by affordable prices for a large segment of citizens registered on the lists of the Ministry of Housing.
Al-Suwailem said that the ministry was keen to find solutions for Saudi families that help them to own the right home for them. SPA Riyadh