Saudi Arabia to build 9 desalination plants on Red Sea

A worker stands at a desalination plant in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. (Reuters)
Updated 22 January 2018
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Saudi Arabia to build 9 desalination plants on Red Sea

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia plans to build nine desalination plants for more than 2 billion riyals ($530 million) on the Red Sea coast, its environment minister said on Sunday.
The plants will have capacity of 240,000 cubic meters of water per day and will be completed in less than 18 months, Abdulrahman Al-Fadhli wrote in a Twitter post.
The project, which the minister said was ordered by King Salman in a royal decree, will help government-owned Saudi Saline Water Conversion Corp. (SWCC) raise production efficiency and cut operating and capital costs, Fadhli added.
He gave no details on funding.
Saudi Arabia said in 2016 it planned to use public-private partnerships (PPP) with local and foreign companies to fund infrastructure projects.
In August, it said it would develop resorts on about 50 Red Sea islands, completing the first phase of that project — which is backed by its Public Investment Fund (PIF) — in the fourth quarter of 2022.
($1=3.75 Saudi riyals)


FaceOf: Dr. Hussein bin Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh, imam at Prophet’s Mosque and high court judge

Updated 31 min 30 sec ago
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FaceOf: Dr. Hussein bin Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh, imam at Prophet’s Mosque and high court judge

Dr. Hussein bin Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh is a respected imam and sermon performer at the Prophet’s Mosque, as well as a judge at the High Court in Madinah.

A royal recommendation by King Salman made Al-Asheikh the official sermon deliverer on the day of Arafat, 9 of Dul Hijjah. He will give this year’s sermon at Al-Nimra Mosque, one of the holy sites in Arafat, as well as leading Dhur and Asr prayers.

Last year, the Arafat sermon and prayers were performed by Sheikh Dr. Saad Shafaee Al-Shetri. In 2016, Sheikh Dr. Abdurrahman Al-Sudais, chief of the Presidency of the Two Holy Mosques, led the prayers.

Born in Bani Tamim in southern Saudi Arabia, Al-Asheikh pursued his scholarly career in Riyadh. He received his bachelor’s degree from Shariah College in Riyadh, and then joined the Higher Judicial Institute, receiving a master’s degree before pursuing a doctorate.

Al-Asheikh studied under great Islamic scholars, getting appointed as a magistrate in 1985. Five years later, he became a judge in the Great Court of Najran. He was transferred a year later to the Grand Court in Riyadh, where he stayed for many years before he joined the Grand Court in Madinah in 1997, receiving the royal decree that appointed him as an imam at the Prophet’s Mosque.

He has been leading prayers at the Prophet’s Mosque for more than two decades, while lecturing at the University of Madinah.

He has delivered many scientific lectures in jurisprudence, Tawheed, Hadith and grammar, in addition to some lectures at places such as the Great Mosque in Riyadh.