Saudi Arabia forms new apparatus of state security

Updated 21 July 2017
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Saudi Arabia forms new apparatus of state security

JEDDAH: King Salman on Thursday decreed the consolidation of the counterterrorism and domestic intelligence services under a new body named the Presidency of State Security.
The new state security agency will be headed by intelligence chief Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed Al-Howairini, who will hold the rank of a minister.
In a series of royal decrees, King Salman also appointed Abdullah bin Abdulkarim bin Abdul Aziz Al-Essa as assistant to the head of the Presidency of State Security, with the rank of minister.
The new body will be concerned with all matters related to state security, and will be overseen by the king.
The General Directorate of Investigation, the Special Security Forces, the Special Emergency Forces, General Security Aviation Command, the General Directorate of Technical Affairs, the National Information Center and all matters related to combatting terrorism and financial investigations will be separated from the Interior Ministry and placed under the new Presidency of State Security.
It is well-known that the Interior Ministry did a remarkable job since its inception until the early 1990s with regard to police, traffic, Passport Department and other services that concern citizens and residents.
However, after the rise of the terror threat, the Interior Ministry concentrated much of its efforts on fighting this scourge.
This led to the addition of a large number of responsibilities, which affected the ministry’s other services such as police, traffic and the Passport Department.
The Presidency of State Security will enable the Interior Ministry to provide the best services to citizens and residents in all sectors. The new presidency will be able to focus on the fight against terrorism on the security and intelligence levels, as well as monitor its financing.
Everything related to the Security Affairs Agency and other functions related to the ministry — including tasks involving civil and military employees, budgets, documents and information — will also be added to the Presidency of State Security.
Experts believe the creation of the Presidency of State Security will rationalize state expenditure, increase revenues, achieve economic growth and competitiveness, and increase exports to reduce reliance on imports.
All sectors, bodies and departments of the Interior Ministry and the Presidency of State Security are mandated to cooperate with each other to ensure necessary support, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported. All decrees are to be implemented from the start of the next fiscal year.

Other appointments
Also appointed on Thursday were Mohammed bin Abdullah bin Ibrahim Al-Kuwaiz as chairman of the Capital Market Authority with the rank of minister; Bader bin Mohammed bin Abdul Aziz bin Asaker as director of the crown prince’s Special Office with the rank of minister; and Sulaiman bin Naif bin Atallah Al-Kathiri as head of special affairs of the crown prince.
Among other appointments, Lt. Gen. Suhail bin Saqr Al-Mutairi was promoted to the rank of general and appointed head of the Royal Guard, in place of Gen. Hamad bin Mohammed Al-Ohaili.
Lt. Gen. Khaled bin Garrar Al-Harbi was appointed commander of the Special Emergency Forces and promoted to the rank of general.
Maj. Gen. Mufleh bin Sulayem Al-Otaibi, commander of the Special Security Forces, was promoted to lieutenant general.


Saudis, expats share Eid experience in the Kingdom

Eid Al-Adha prayers held in different locations of Saudi Arabia. (SPA)
Updated 58 min 16 sec ago
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Saudis, expats share Eid experience in the Kingdom

  • This Eid is a source of immense joy to Muslims as they decorate their houses, wear new clothes and give as much as they can to the poor

JEDDAH: Muslims celebrate their second beloved Eid, the Eid Al-Adha, the second Eid of the year after the Eid Al-Fitr.
It is the biggest festival of the year, to commemorate the valor, bravery and faithfulness of Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) and his son Ismail (peace be upon him). Prophet Ismail was brave and young and willingly offered himself for sacrifice, when his father was asked to sacrifice his most beloved possession.
Moments before Ibrahim was about to sacrifice his beloved son, Allah sent a ram to take Ismail’s place, and now millions of Muslims celebrate this day by sacrificing animals and dividing them into three parts. One third is distributed among the poor, one third among relatives and the last third is kept for the family.
This Eid is a source of immense joy to Muslims as they decorate their houses, wear new clothes and give as much as they can to the poor. It focuses on food more than any other events. After the obvious distribution, giving to the poor and worshipping, people tend to hold dinners with the main dishes made with meat, or hold barbecues, to celebrate with friends and families.
In many different countries, people have different traditions they follow: In China, families go to their ancestors’ graves and pray for their forgiveness in front of Allah. In the West, gifts are given to children, and in the Middle East youngsters are given money called “Eidi” or “Eidiya.”
Children are the most excited about this event as they get to enjoy their favorite food and receive money and gifts from elders.
Ghala Al-Otaibi, a Saudi citizen of Taif, said: “We celebrate Eid with relatives living at a distance and parents; there is usually a variety of food.”
Mohammad Al-Harthy, also from Taif, said: “We visit our families and enjoy a lot, we usually slaughter a sheep or a camel. Most of the people celebrate Eid in the same way, but the only difference may be in food traditions.”
Amna Abbasi, a Pakistani mother from Jubail, said: “During Eid, adults and children wear new clothes and exchange gifts with each other. Children love to participate in this process as they learn the value of giving to others and cherishing the smiles of the needy.”