DiplomaticQuarter: Boosting international relations is the goal of new football tournament in Riyadh

The event aims to improve relations between the diplomatic communities.
Updated 06 September 2018
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DiplomaticQuarter: Boosting international relations is the goal of new football tournament in Riyadh

  • Diplomatic staff from more than 20 embassies are participating in the historic event, organized by the British Council.

RIYADH: The inaugural Diplomat’s Cup Football Tournament has kicked off in the capital, the latest event in this new era of sporting activities in Saudi Arabia. Diplomatic staff from more than 20 embassies are participating in the historic event, organized by the British Council.

Salman Qureshi of the British Council was the driving force of the international cultural initiative, with assisted by Ziyad Al-Obaidi, the tournament’s head organizer. 

Speaking at the opening ceremony held recently, Qureshi said that the event aims to improve relations between the diplomatic communities and support the Kingdom’s plans to expand and diversify all areas of socio-cultural life in line with Vision 2030, through the growth and inclusion of international entities in the Kingdom. 

John Pare, the British Council’s deputy director praised the initiative and the support of Sport Times, one of the event partners. The trophy that will be presented to the winners of the tournament was also unveiled during the opening ceremony.

Most of the diplomatic missions taking part in the tournament were represented at the ceremony and expressed their support for such social and cultural events, where people from a variety of national and cultural backgrounds can come together and learn more about each other.

The tournament is being hosted by Al Shabab Club. The participating embassies include the US, the UK, Canada, Australia, Pakistan, Germany, France, Austria, South Africa, Senegal, Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Mexico, Brazil, Uruguay, Venezuela, Mauritius, Azerbaijan, Japan, Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia. The British Council has also assembled a team.

The teams have been split into four groups for the first stage, with the top two in each qualifying for the knockout phase. The final and closing ceremony will be held later this month.


Makkah Route: Health services presented to Hajjis in their home countries

Updated 21 July 2019
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Makkah Route: Health services presented to Hajjis in their home countries

  • 257,981 pilgrims benefited from the "preventive services" since the new initiative’s launch

RIYADH: One of the services provided by the Makkah Route initiative, which aims to smooth the Hajj journey of pilgrims and provide top-quality service, is to ensure that all health requirements are met.

The Communication, Relations and Health Awareness General Department of the Ministry of Health is implementing the initiative in two ways. 

The first is to ensure that the proper application of the health requirements for Hajj and Umrah is followed in targeted countries before issuing the Kingdom’s entry visa (Malaysia, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Tunisia). 

The second is to check that preventive measures are taken according to the world’s epidemiological situation, for instance in Pakistan.

“Preventive measures” mean, for example, providing polio vaccines for pilgrims. The vaccine, approved by the World Health Organization (WHO), is provided through the Pakistani health authorities at the departure area of the airport.

“The ministry is also deploying a team of five people qualified to supervise the application of health requirements and assess the vaccination procedure and the application of preventive measures,” the department added.   


HIGHLIGHTS

The Makkah Route initiative aims to ensure that the proper application of the health requirements for Hajj and Umrah is followed in targeted countries before issuing the Kingdom’s entry visa.

The initiative also ensures that preventive measures are taken according to the world’s epidemiological situation, for instance in Pakistan.

The workforce at the different land, air, and sea entry/exit points during this year’s Hajj season numbers more than 1,700 individuals.

The teams include 131 experienced doctors, general health specialists, epidemiological monitors, and other staff to provide the necessary treatment and preventive services to pilgrims.


The ministry’s procedures in the departure hall include prepping emergency clinics at the points where Makkah Route pilgrims are received. 

These clinics deal with urgent cases, prepare awareness information for pilgrims and coordinate with the General Authority of Civil Aviation regarding their distribution on the targeted airlines.

The workforce at the different land, air, and sea entry/exit points during this year’s Hajj season numbers more than 1,700 individuals, including 131 experienced doctors, general health specialists, epidemiological monitors, and other staff to provide the necessary treatment and preventive services to pilgrims.

The ministry stated that the number of health practitioners assigned to the service of pilgrims during Hajj “is more than 30,000.”

The ministry encourages volunteering during the Hajj season; it believes that it is a very important and noble service toward fellow citizens, nations and the religion, where Islam highly encourages volunteering and serving others.

The ministry is coordinating the major institutions and commissions via its Hajj volunteering link to register volunteers so that they can participate through the societal partnership program.

The missions affiliated with the pilgrim’s affairs offices provide basic treatment services and refer patients to the ministry’s health facilities, keeping an eye on the overall health situation and reporting any suspicious infectious diseases. 

The ministry monitors all the health institutions and medical missions affiliated with the pilgrim’s affairs offices to make sure the health requirements are being properly applied, to ensure pilgrims’ safety and guarantee an environment free of infectious diseases.

The Health Ministry has confirmed that so far that there has been no incidence of any epidemic diseases or quarantine cases recorded among pilgrims, who arrived and the health situation is reassuring.

Since the first of Dul Qaada, the ministry has provided preventive services, via access points, to 257,981 pilgrims, with a total rate of commitment to vaccination reached  87.4 percent for meningitis, 67.3 percent for yellow fever and 95.3 percent for polio.