Preparations on for Ramadan crowd control in Makkah

Updated 13 June 2014
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Preparations on for Ramadan crowd control in Makkah

Saudi Arabia has announced a comprehensive security plan to deal with the large influx of pilgrims to Makkah expected during the holy month of Ramadan.
The plan takes into consideration possible stampedes at the Grand Mosque in Makkah and some ongoing expansion projects in the area.
In view of this, the authorities have begun gearing up crowd management and traffic control in the holy city ahead of Ramadan. The police, municipality and the Presidency of the Holy Mosques Affairs are drawing up plans to cope with the expected crowds in the city in the fasting month.
Municipal Affairs Minister Prince Mansour bin Miteb held a high-level meeting in Makkah on Thursday with top officials of the Makkah Municipality and police officers, according to official sources.
Prince Mansour chaired the meeting in which the Kingdom’s Director General of Public Security Maj. Gen. Osman bin Nasser Al-Mahrraj, Makkah region police chief Maj. Gen. Abdulaziz Al-Souli, Makkah Mayor Osama Al-Bar and other high-ranking officials participated to draw up a strategy to finalize the arrangements for Ramadan preparations in the holy city, Osama Al Zaitoony of Makkah Municipality said.
He said that the meeting focused on making it easier for the pilgrims to complete their rituals amid the expansion work in the Grand Mosque.
Prince Mansour has directed officials to draw up a plan to enable pilgrims and worshippers to have a smooth Umrah during Ramadan as directed by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah and which is being followed up by Makkah Gov. Prince Mishal bin Abdullah, he added.
Al-Zaitoony said that the municipality and police officials discussed crowd management amid the ongoing infrastructure projects in the holy city in addition to the Haram expansion and other development works around the Grand Mosque.
He said that the meeting also reviewed the preparations for this year’s Haj.
The Makkah Traffic Department has prepared a comprehensive plan to ease traffic and flow of pilgrims during the holy month.
Col. Ali Zahrani of Makkah Traffic Police told Arab News that elaborate traffic arrangements have been made to enable the pilgrims and visitors to have easy access to the Grand Mosque, keeping in view the ongoing massive construction work in and around the Grand Mosque area.
He said that all arrangements are in place to facilitate the smooth flow of the unprecedented number of pilgrims who are expected to flock to the city from all over the world during the holy month, which coincides with the annual summer vacation.
Maj. Gen. Yahya Al-Zahrani, commander of the Grand Mosque, has advised all security guards inside the Grand Mosque to display their professional skills and humane approach with the increasing number of guests in the holy month.
According to a statement issued by the Presidency of the Grand Mosque, special orientation classes for security guards of the Grand Mosques were conducted Wednesday.


Arab News moves editorial headquarters to Riyadh

Updated 1 min 6 sec ago
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Arab News moves editorial headquarters to Riyadh

  • Newspaper to be based at owning group’s corporate office building in Saudi Arabia’s capital
  • Managing Editor Mohammed Al-Sulami promoted to newly created position of Jeddah bureau chief

JEDDAH: Four decades after its establishment in Jeddah, Arab News — the region’s leading English-language daily — is announcing that it is moving its editorial headquarters to the Saudi capital, Riyadh.

The head office of the newspaper, which today celebrates its 43rd anniversary, will be relocating to the corporate headquarters building of its owning group, the Saudi Research and Marketing Group (SRMG).

The SRMG building — on Makkah Al-Mukarramah road in Riyadh’s Al-Mutamarat district — is also home to the headquarters of several of Arab News’ sister publications, including the Arabic-language business daily Al-Eqtisadiah, Arriyadiyah sports daily and the Saudi bureau of the regional pan-Arab daily Asharq Al-Awsat.

“When Arab News was established in 1975, most embassies and major corporations — including SRMG — were based in Jeddah. Things have changed since and given the magnitude of events and regional decision-making taking place in the Kingdom’s capital, it only makes sense for us to be moving into our owning group’s headquarters in Riyadh,” said Faisal J. Abbas, editor in chief of Arab News


“We at Arab News claim to be The Voice of a Changing Region, and we can’t be that voice if we are not at the heart of this change. This move will bring us closer to local and visiting decision-makers, while our Jeddah bureau will continue to serve as an important regional hub,” he added.

The new address and contact details of the paper has been reflected in both its print and online editions as of today. The official inauguration of the new headquarters in Riyadh will take place at a ceremony to be held later this quarter.

Arab News also announces the promotion of Managing Editor Mohammed Al-Sulami to the newly created role of Jeddah bureau chief, supervising editorial and administration operations for the whole western region of Saudi Arabia. Al-Sulami — a Saudi journalist who has been with the newspaper since 2009 — assumes his new duties as of May 1, 2018.