Sri Lanka nominates new ambassador to KSA

Updated 18 March 2014
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Sri Lanka nominates new ambassador to KSA

The Sri Lankan government has nominated former Colombo Mayor Mohamed Hussain Mohamed as the new ambassador to its embassy in Riyadh.
Mohamed Hussain Mohamed will succeed Vadivel Krishnamoorthy, who has been nominated as ambassador to the Lankan mission in Kenya.
Hussain Mohamed is the son of former Sri Lankan Speaker Haniffa Mohamed, a founding member of the Constituent Council of the Muslim World League in Makkah.
The ambassador-designate has also served the Western Provincial Council as its elected member. Currently, he is the vice president of the Colombo Islamic Center, which is affiliated to organizations such as the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), Muslim World League, Organization of Islamic Conference and the Karachi-based World Muslim Congress.
During his mayoralty stint from 1989 to 1991, he also served as vice president of the Asia Pacific Union of Local Authorities.
Sri Lanka set up its embassy in Jeddah in 1983 with Dickman De Alwis as its first charge d’ Affaires, where subsequently in 1993, the Saudi government reciprocated with a mission in Colombo appointing Abdullah Al-Zahrani as its charge d’ Affaires. Later in 1985, the Lankan embassy moved its location to the capital, Riyadh.
Former ambassadors of Sri Lanka in the Kingdom include the late M.R.M. Thassim, late A.L.M. Hashim, late Cader Markar, Izzat Ahamed, Javid Yusuf, Nowfel Salih Jabir, Ibrahim Sahib Ansar, A.M.J. Sadiq, late A.A.M. Marleen and Ahmed A. Jawad, who departed recently.
Outgoing Ambassador Krishnamoorthy was earlier attached to the External Affairs Ministry as its director general for the South-East Asia and SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation).
His last overseas posting was as the deputy high commissioner for Sri Lanka in Chennai, south India. He succeeded Ambassador P.M. Amza who completed his three-year posting here and moved to London as the deputy high commissioner and is now the island’s ambassador to Brussels.
Krishnamoorthy had earlier served as high commissioner at Dhaka (Bangladesh) and completed his three-year term before he was cross-posted to Chennai.
He hails from Nuwara-Eliya, (also known as little London) and did his schooling at the prestigious Hatton Highlands College.
He holds a degree from the University of Peradeniya followed with a postgraduate diploma in Educational Management and Master of Arts in Foreign Affairs and Trade from Monash University, Australia.
Krishnamoorthy carries a rich experience of over 33 years of public service, which includes more than 20 years in Foreign Service where he held a wide range of posts. He was in Bangladesh (2006-09).
Before that he was the Director-General of the UN and Multilateral Affairs Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for two years (2004-06).
He also attended the 60th United Nations General Assembly Session in New York and the Board of Governors Meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna.
Krishnamoorthy had earlier served in The Netherlands (2001-04) and China (1992-97).
While serving as the Minister Counselor at the Embassy in The Netherlands, inter alia, he functioned as the deputy permanent representative to the Organization of the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).
He has also worked as the director of East Asia desk, deputy chief of protocol (1999-2001, assistant director/ West desk (1992) and director of the Sri Lankan Institute of International Relations (2004-06).
Krishnamoorthy is married with two daughters. He speaks Tamil, Sinhala, English and Chinese.


Mosque of Bones: Evidence of Prophet Muhammad’s era

Updated 25 May 2018
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Mosque of Bones: Evidence of Prophet Muhammad’s era

JEDDAH: Masjid Al-Izam (Mosque of the Bones) is a historic mosque in Al-Ula governorate, located 300 km north of Madinah.
In the ninth year after Hijrah (the emigration of Makkah’s Muslims to Madinah), as the Prophet Muhammad was on his way to battle, he marked the Qibla (the direction in which Muslims should pray) using bones because he could not find rocks or blocks.
To mark the occasion, the area’s residents built a mosque on that spot and named it Masjid Al-Izam.
It was made of stone, and mud was used to cover its walls, but it has undergone several restorations.
“Mention of the mosque can be found in many renowned scientific sources,” Abdullah Kaber, a researcher in Madinah’s development authority, told the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).
He said Masjid Al-Izam has attracted the attention of King Salman, who is focused on restoring a number of historic mosques across the Kingdom.
The Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) is planning to develop tourism in Al-Ula since it houses many historical sites and relics.