FaceOf:  Dr. Abdul Aziz Sarhan, secretary-general of the Muslim World League’s relief agency

Dr. Abdul Aziz Sarhan
Updated 16 August 2018
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FaceOf:  Dr. Abdul Aziz Sarhan, secretary-general of the Muslim World League’s relief agency

Dr. Abdul Aziz Sarhan has been the secretary-general of the International Association for Relief, Care and Development (IARCD) since Mohammed Al-Issa, secretary-general of the Muslim World League (MWL) and chairman of the board of directors of the IARCD, commissioned him earlier this year.

On Wednesday, MWL sent a team to Indonesia’s Lombok island in an initiative to help restore what last week's powerful earthquake has destroyed.

The secretary-general said that IARCD’s team was working on responding to the needs of everyone affected by the earthquake, and they would assist those in need as prioritized by necessity, especially women and children.

Abdul Aziz Sarhan was born in Makkah in 1950, completed his initial schooling in Makkah, and then pursued a bachelor’s degree in geography and a diploma in education from Um Al-Qura University in Makkah in 1973. 

He received a master’s degree in social studies from the University of Denver, Colorado, followed a doctorate curriculum and instruction in 1982.

During his time in the US, Sarhan founded a student club in Colorado, called the Saudi Arabic School, in 1983 and chaired its board. Along with a group of fellow Saudi students in America, he also started a magazine in Colorado.

Sarhan is well known in the Muslim community for his work with the Muslim World League as the director of the Islamic Cultural Center in Madrid, in 1992 for four years. 

In the years after that until 1995, he served as the secretary of the European Continental Board of Mosques. For the following two years, he was the director of the office of the Muslim World League in South Africa.

He was also the representative of the International Islamic Relief Organization in Spain and South Africa from 1995 to 1996, and was appointed director of the Office of the Muslim World League in France.


‘I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi Arabia for years’: Akon tells Asharqiah crowd

Updated 55 min 54 sec ago
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‘I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi Arabia for years’: Akon tells Asharqiah crowd

  • “First thing tomorrow morning, I’m headed to Makkah to perform Umrah” Akon said 
  • He entertained the crowd with some of his most popular hits at the Asharqiah Music Festival

DAMMAM: American rapper Akon captivated a packed crowd at the Asharqiah Music Festival on Friday, opening up the second night of musical festivities at Sharqiah Season with a special shout-out to Saudi Arabia.

“You have no idea, I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi for years, man,” Akon said, before launching into his song, “Gunshot.” Later, he told the crowd: “I’m seeing a tremendous change in Saudi Arabia here tonight."

At 8 p.m., under a bright moon on a beautifully cool night, Akon began his set, delighting fans who had spent over 10 minutes chanting his name in anticipation of his arrival.

He entertained the crowd with some of his most popular hits, including “Smack That,” “Mr. Lonely” and “Sorry: Blame It On Me.” And he wrapped things up with “I love you, Saudi... thank you for making me feel at home."

Backstage before the concert, Akon told Arab News how excited he was to be in Saudi Arabia for the first time. He was especially excited to visit one Saudi city in particular.

“First thing tomorrow morning, I’m headed to Makkah to perform Umrah.”