Experts take part in tour of Saudi Arabia’s geological treasure sites

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The Saudi Geological Survey (SGS) organized a trip to Madinah for guests of the 12th International Geological Congress. (Supplied)
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The Saudi Geological Survey (SGS) organized a trip to Madinah for guests of the 12th International Geological Congress. (Supplied)
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The Saudi Geological Survey (SGS) organized a trip to Madinah for guests of the 12th International Geological Congress. (Supplied)
Updated 10 February 2018
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Experts take part in tour of Saudi Arabia’s geological treasure sites

RIYADH: The Saudi Geological Survey (SGS) organized a trip to Madinah for guests of the 12th International Geological Congress under the title “Our Goods from Our Land.”
SGS spokesman Tareq Aba Al-Khail said that experts from the Kingdom, the US, Egypt, Greece, Italy, and France took part in the trip, and they participated in the sessions and workshops organized in cooperation with the Saudi Society for Earth Sciences.
Aba Al-Khail added that the delegation inspected the Albint dam (Dam of the Girl) in the village of Thamad in Khaybar, which is an architectural masterpiece built thousands of years ago. The length of the dam is about 170 meters, with a height of 40 meters, and it is built at the junction of two great valleys. Aba Al-Khail noted that parts of the dam previously collapsed because of an earthquake that hit the surrounding area despite being constructed of huge rocks.
He said that the delegation also visited the cave of Um Gursan in Khyber, one of the largest caves in the Arab world with a length of 1,500 meters, a maximum height of 12 meters and a width of 45 meters. The cave is about 3 million years old, and it is surrounded by a wall at the top to protect it from falling dust. There are also ladders to facilitate the smooth flow of visitors, and it contains important archaeological assets, such as human skulls and bones of predatory animals. There are writings dating back thousands of years and Aba Al-Kail noted that the cave is destined to become a tourist attraction in the future.
The trip highlighted many distinctive geological features, noting that the SGS was able to acquaint the participants with a part of the heritage of the Kingdom so they could convey images and information to their countries.
He also revealed that the SGS nominated 15 caves for the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) to convert into tourist attractions.


Saudi interior minister reviews Hajj safety procedures

Minister of Interior Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif patronizes the military parade. (SPA)
Updated 14 August 2018
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Saudi interior minister reviews Hajj safety procedures

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s interior minister patronized a military parade of the Hajj security forces on Monday.
Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif, who is also the Chairman of the Higher Hajj Committee, reviewed preparations to serve the pilgrims, who are continuing to arrive in the Kingdom ahead of the annual pilgrimage. Their numbers are expected to reach the millions.
The Kingdom’s security forces are sparing no efforts to maintain a safe environment for the Hajjis.
Prince Abdulaziz affirmed the preparedness of all sectors involved in securing this year's Hajj.
The minister reviewed the special mechanisms, armored vehicles and security aviation on deployment. 
During the ceremony, Gen. Saeed bin Abdullah Al-Qahtani, assistant minister of interior for operations affairs, said "the forces have begun their duties in Mecca, the holy sites, Medinah and all the outlets and roads leading to the Hajj ritual areas.
The duties of the security forces fall in line with the directives of King Salman, followed up by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and under the direct supervision of the Minister of Interior.
Gen. Al-Qahtani stressed the readiness of the forces, in coordination with Saudi ministries and other bodies, to maintain the security of pilgrims and facilitate their Hajj.