British MP praises Saudi crown prince for ‘ideological commitment’ to women’s rights

British MP Naz Shah praised Crown Prince Mohammed for promoting a moderate interpretation of Islam. (AFP)
Updated 08 March 2018
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British MP praises Saudi crown prince for ‘ideological commitment’ to women’s rights

LONDON: Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has made important steps toward improving the rights of women in the Kingdom, a prominent British female MP said this week.
Writing for the UK’s news website on Tuesday, Naz Shah, vice chair of the all-party parliamentary group on British Muslims, praised Crown Prince Mohammed for promoting a moderate interpretation of Islam.
She said that he had acted out of both “ideological commitment and practical necessity” by diluting the powers of Saudi Arabia’s religious police, granting women the right to drive and tackling corruption.
Shah, an MP for the opposition Labour Party, urged Britain to be a “candid friend” to Crown Prince Mohammed during and after his visit to the country.
“Like many British Muslim girls, I was taught to look to Saudi Arabia as an example in religious matters. Many Muslim Brits won’t even start their Ramadan fast until the Saudi clergy have confirmed the moon sighting, and I have family and friends whose lives have been changed through a pilgrimage there,” she wrote.
“This makes it all the more painful when the example that is set is one of the default marginalization and subjugation of women and girls. This has been the case for too long. But in the past few months things have started to change,” she wrote.
Meanwhile, another Labour MP, Graham Jones, called on his party’s leadership to rethink its critical stance toward Saudi military involvement in Yemen.
Writing on the PoliticsHome website on Tuesday, the chair of the committee on arms export controls said: “No government in the world would accept a rebel force in a neighboring country attacking its citizens and its territory. Why should we expect Saudi, and its allies, to be any different?”


FaceOf: Abdulrahman bin Mohammed Al-Assimi, Saudi deputy minister of education

Dr. Abdulrahman bin Mohammed Al-Assimi
Updated 11 December 2018
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FaceOf: Abdulrahman bin Mohammed Al-Assimi, Saudi deputy minister of education

  • Al-Assimi obtained a Ph.D. in curriculum and teaching methods from the University of West Virginia, US, in 2001
  • Al-Assimi has also served the Shoura Council for two consecutive terms from 2005 to 2008

Dr. Abdulrahman bin Mohammed Al-Assimi has been the deputy minister of education since April 2017.

On Monday, Al-Assimi received the general supervisor of the Saudi Digital Library, Dr. Saud bin Musa Al-Salahi, and other members of the library staff at his office. The library recently received the Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum Knowledge Award 2018.

The deputy minister congratulated Education Minister Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed Al-Issa on this achievement and praised the library’s role in provided world-class services to its users.

Al-Assimi obtained a Ph.D. in curriculum and teaching methods from the University of West Virginia, US, in 2001.

He began his career as a teacher. Later, he switched to administrative roles in the education department and served as a supervisor, director of education, a Shoura Council member and director of Prince Sattam bin Abdul Aziz University. 

From 2001 to 2003, he served as the director of practical program management at the Ministry of Education. Prior to that, he was curricula supervisor of national education at the ministry.

Al-Assimi also served as the assistant director general of educational research at the Ministry of Education from 2003 to 2004. Subsequently, he was appointed the director of education in Al-Kharj region and worked in that position from 2004 to 2005. 

He has also served the Shoura Council for two consecutive terms from 2005 to 2008.

Al-Assimi has also co-authored books for high school students. He presented a study on vocational training for teachers in the Gulf countries, and another study on the evaluation of training courses for the employees of the educational sector.