Sweden claims ties with KSA back to normal

Updated 03 April 2015
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Sweden claims ties with KSA back to normal

Sweden said on Thursday that relations with Saudi Arabia were back to normal and that Riyadh would lift its temporary visa ban.
“Saudi Arabia has informed us that it saw its relationship with Sweden as normalized. As part of this, visas will be given again to Swedes. Exactly when, we cannot say,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Catarina Axelsson was quoted as saying by AFP.
Riyadh recalled its ambassador to Stockholm on March 11 for Sweden Foreign Minister Margot Wallstroem’s flagrant interference in the Kingdom’s internal affairs.
Around the same time, Sweden unilaterally canceled a long-standing military cooperation deal between the two countries.
Saudi Arabia proceeded to freeze business visas to Swedish citizens, while the United Arab Emirates also recalled its ambassador to Stockholm.
Fearing a financial impact, the Swedish government invited Saudi business leaders for talks.
Last Friday, Swedish MP Bjorn von Sydow traveled to Riyadh to deliver a letter from King Carl XVI and Prime Minister Stefan Lofven to Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman.
The content of the message was not revealed, but it was reported in the Saudi media that the Swedish government apologized for the undiplomatic conduct of Wallstroem.


Ever wondered how they clean the floor around the Kaaba during Hajj? Quickly

Updated 19 August 2018
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Ever wondered how they clean the floor around the Kaaba during Hajj? Quickly

  • Hundreds of thousands of people walk around the Kaaba during Hajj
  • The process of cleaning the floor is a well rehearsed task that takes minutes

DUBAI: With millions of people currently attending Makkah as they perform the Hajj pilgrimage, which includes circumambulating the Kaaba, it is no wonder that things need to be cleaned.

This sped-up video footage, that has been shared on social media, shows how teams of cleaners enter the Mataf (the circumambulation area around the Kaaba), while a line of security stop the pilgrims entering the area which is being cleaned with a long line of rope.  

The process is well rehearsed, so the teams of cleaners take little time to ensure the area is ready in a short time, so that pilgrims can continue.

Here’s the video: