King Abdullah Park ‘undamaged, functioning’

Updated 11 October 2013
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King Abdullah Park ‘undamaged, functioning’

Officials in Riyadh have brushed off rumors and media reports the new King Abdullah Malaz Park has been damaged in any manner.
“There is no truth whatsoever in the tampering and vandalism reports (of the park) claimed by some social media users and local newspapers,” Abdullah Al-Muqbil, secretary of the Riyadh region, said in a statement issued yesterday.
Mohammed Suleiman, director-general of the garden and landscape architecture at the Riyadh secretariat, said the park’s main attraction, the “Dancing Fountain,” was still in operation. He said the caretakers were maintaining the park.
Reports of the alleged vandalism went viral last week that claimed there was garbage lying around, broken plastic seats, damaged flowerpots, and mud in the new fountain.
Agreeing with the officials’ statements, an expatriate who requested anonymity told Arab News the fountain was operating smoothly when he went to the park.
“I went with my family on Tuesday night and saw the breathtaking dancing fountain.” He took photographs and videos because his children loved the show, he said and showed a video to support his claim. Some Saudi netizens said they did not know whom to believe.
“There are people spreading lies and rumors on their social media accounts to cut livelihoods and threaten others for their personal interests. They have lost credibility,” user bird1234 commented.
Another user called on government officials to determine the truth and punish those telling lies.
Riyadh Gov. Prince Khalid bin Bandar opened the park with much fanfare only last week, showcasing the giant fountain and its colorful laser lighting.
Visitors earlier claimed that the fountain was not working because children had thrown mud into it. Vandals had also broken seats and flowerpots, they claimed.
Speaking with Arab News then, Mohsin Ali Khan, a Riyadh-based accountant, had said he was angry at the damage done and urged the city authorities to deploy guards at the park.
Nabeel Nasir, an IT professional in the city, said the police should arrest and punish the perpetrators. “Such punishments will deter miscreants from defacing public property,” Nasir said.
Abdullah Ahmad, who went to the park Thursday last week with his family, was disappointed to find it in such a poor state. He was not able to “enjoy the laser show and dancing musical fountain.”
The 318,000-sqm state-of-the-art park is close to Prince Faisal bin Fahd Stadium and was built as a venue for heritage exhibitions and recreational activities during the holidays.
It consists of a 12-meter-wide pedestrian corridor, surrounded by lush greenery and illuminated lamps mounted on poles. It opened to young people for two days and families for five days.


Houthis targetted civilian facility in Najran with an explosives-laden drone, says Arab Coalition

Updated 21 May 2019
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Houthis targetted civilian facility in Najran with an explosives-laden drone, says Arab Coalition

  • Houthis also fired two ballistic missiles toward the holy city of Makkah and Jeddah on Monday

RIYADH: Houthi militants had tried to hit a civilian facility in Saudi Arabia's southern border province of Najran with a drone carrying explosives, the Arab Coalition supporting Yemen's legitimate government said on Tuesday.
In a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Colonel Turki Al-Maliki, the spokesman of the Saudi-led military coalition said the target was a vital facility.
"The Houthi-backed terrorist militia of Iran continues to carry out acts of terrorism that pose a real threat to regional and international security by targeting civilian objects and civilian facilities, as well as civilian citizens and residents of all nationalities," Al-Maliki said.

The statement did not mention casualties and gave no further details.

Earlier on Monday, Al-Maliki said Houthis fired two ballistic missiles toward the holy city of Makkah and Jeddah but both were shot down by Saudi air defense forces.

The Iran-backed Houthis have fired dozens of missiles at targets in Saudi Arabia, including the capital Riyadh, since the Arab Coalition intervened in 2015 to restore the government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, which was ousted in a Houthi coup.