Saudi patients in Canada transferred to the US

Ambassador Naif bin Bandar Al-Sudairi was recalled from Canada after the dispute erupted (SPA)
Updated 09 August 2018
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Saudi patients in Canada transferred to the US

JEDDAH: All Saudi patients receiving medical care in Canada have been transferred to the United States to continue their treatment, the Kingdom’s ambassador the country said on Thursday

Naif bin Bandar Al-Sudairi said there were “not that many” Saudi citizens affected.

Speaking from Riyadh, the ambassador told Al-Arabiya News Channel, that the Saudi  embassy is offering all the necessary assistance to its citizens, and will be taking all necessary measures that protect their interests.

The ambassador was recalled from Ottawa and his Canadian counterpart ordered to leave the Kingdom in a dispute that erupted earlier this week. Saudi Arabia accused Canada of interfering in its internal affairs after the Canadian foreign ministry tweeted that the Kingdom should release detained “civil society activists.”

Saudi Arabia has halted all new investments, cut flights and arranged for Saudi patients and students in the country to be moved elsewhere.

When asked about Saudi students on scholarships in Canada who are about to finish their studies and graduate, specifically those enrolled in medical schools, the ambassador said there are no exceptions “so far” to the decision.

The ambassador noted that it will be considering “exceptional cases” among the Saudi scholarship students “in the future”, noting that the embassy is keen to do all it can to protect the benefits of its citizens. 

He said even those students studying on their own expense have decided to leave “as per their own will” because they also do not accept the Canadian stance towards the Kingdom. 


Writing’s on the wall for unsightly graffiti in 36 Saudi cities

Updated 50 sec ago
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Writing’s on the wall for unsightly graffiti in 36 Saudi cities

  • 5,700 students tapped to replace graffiti with traditional art
  • The massive spruce-up operation will take place in southwest region of Asir

RIYADH: An initiative to clear unsightly graffiti from the walls of 36 Saudi cities and replace it with traditional art has been officially launched.

A 5,700-strong army of students will be drafted for the massive spruce-up operation to take place over a period of 36 hours across the Kingdom’s southwest region of Asir.

Once the walls have been cleaned, the second phase of the project will involve raising awareness about the importance of maintaining public spaces, with the city of Abha the first to benefit. There, a length of wall covering more than 2,000 square meters, will be decorated.

The scheme is partly aimed at encouraging Asir youth to become proactive citizens in their own cities, and role models for other provinces.

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The scheme aims to encourage Asir youth to become proactive citizens in their own cities, and role models for other provinces.

Students from seven education administrations in the region will clean walls on main and side roads, and also suburbs, in 36 cities.

An official statement issued by Asir regional authorities, said the objectives behind the Asir campaign were “to encourage social responsibility among its citizens, empower youth to participate in activities that bring out their potential, and to increase awareness of responsibility toward public ownership.”

Students from seven education administrations in the region will clean walls on main and side roads, and also suburbs, in 36 cities.

Many of the walls will then be decked out with art works including Al-Qatt Al-Asiri, a traditionally female interior wall decoration. In 2017, the ancient art form was added to the UNESCO List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

The statement added that Asir had been embracing cultural art for decades, and Al-Qatt Al-Asiri was now identified with the Asir region around the world. The British Museum and other major international exhibition centers have been acquiring the work of Asir artists in recent years.

Attending the launch of the initiative in Abha, Dr. Walid Al-Humaidi, the secretary of Asir region, said: “This initiative is part of objectives to improve the urban landscape, which is one of the most important programs of national transformation in the municipal sector in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.”

He added that the second part of the project aimed to increase awareness about the value of artwork and its role in developing a sense of human belonging.