Italian Navy frigate’s visit to Dammam ‘boosts defense ties’

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A file photo of the Italian Navy multi-mission frigate Carlo Margottini.
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A helicopter is seen atop the Italian Navy multi-mission frigate Carlo Margottini.
Updated 22 March 2018
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Italian Navy frigate’s visit to Dammam ‘boosts defense ties’

JEDDAH: The visit of the European multi-mission frigate Carlo Margottini in Dammam was a positive sign for Italian efforts to promote defense ties with the Kingdom, Italian ambassador Luca Ferrari said on Thursday.
The frigate left Kuwait on Thursday and is expected to arrive in Saudi Arabia on Friday. Ferrari said it was the perfect time for the arrival of the frigate, 10 months after the visit of the FREMM frigate Carabiniere in the Kingdom in May 2017.
He said that there were "intensive" understandings between Italian shipbuilding company Fincantieri and Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI), the holding company set up by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for the development of Saudi military industries to produce half of military equipment in the Kingdom by 2030.
Ferrari said Saudi Arabia began taking an interest in the naval military industries in the second half of 2016 when Carabiniere pulled into Saudi seas twice; the first time from Dec. 26, 2016 to Jan. 10, 2017 and the second time from May 3 to May 6 in 2017.
"Today, Carlo Margottini is back and its return has a very important meaning, reminding every one of the Kingdom’s concern to conclude cooperation agreements and buy ships to develop its defensive industry," he said.
The frigate Carlo Margottini Sapienza set sail on Feb. 20, and stopped in Pakistan and Kuwait. After Dammam, it will dock in Abu Dhabi before proceeding to Djibouti in April to lead the EU campaign against piracy (Operation Atlanta). Carlo Margottini will remain in the Gulf of Aden until August.
The decision to move the Italian frigate to the Middle East is part of the activities of the Italian Navy, along with allied nations within the framework of multinational cooperation and dialogue between states.


US highlights Saudi Arabia’s key role in global fight against terrorism

Saudi Arabia has continued to maintain a strong anti-terrorism relationship with the US. (SPA)
Updated 20 September 2018
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US highlights Saudi Arabia’s key role in global fight against terrorism

  • The US State Department pointed out that the Kingdom has achieved a high level of accuracy in its counterterrorism operations

WASHINGTON: The US State Department has praised Saudi Arabia for its efforts to combat terrorism, describing the Kingdom as an active and key member in the global coalition to defeat Daesh.
“Saudi Arabia has continued to maintain a strong anti-terrorism relationship with the United States and has supported the strengthening of bilateral cooperation between the two countries,” the State Department noted in its annual report on the global state of terrorism. It also highlighted the joint strategic vision between the two countries and a number of new initiatives to counter terrorist messages and disrupt the financing of terrorism launched last year during US president Donald-Trump’s visit to the Kingdom.
The report said Saudi Arabia has implemented systems to follow UN Security Council sanctions on groups and individuals linked to Daesh and Al Qaeda, and has expanded existing counterterrorism programs and projects to rehabilitate terrorist fighters who leave extremist groups. It has also adopted laws to counter the financing of terrorist groups.
The State Department pointed out that the Kingdom has achieved a high level of accuracy in its counterterrorism operations, and has carried out a number of arrests and disrupted active terrorist cells throughout the country.
The report referred to terrorist plans that were thwarted in the Kingdom, noting the efforts being made in legislation, law enforcement and border security, as well as the country’s positive contribution as a member of the Financial Action Task Force for the Middle East and North Africa, a regional body that imposes financial sanctions on individuals and groups that help to fund terrorism.
"The Kingdom has maintained strict control over the banking sector and tightened sanctions on the financing of terrorism," the report said.
It also pointed out that the Kingdom provided 100 million euros ($117 million) to fight terrorism in the Sahel countries in Africa, as the Kingdom is a founding member of the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum.