Family, friends mourn young Saudi student killed in Florida apartment

Yasser Abualfaraj, second from left, with his classmates in Miami, Florida. (Facebook)
Updated 11 October 2018
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Family, friends mourn young Saudi student killed in Florida apartment

  • The body of Yasser Abualfaraj, 23, was discovered by his roommate on Sunday in a building opposite the University of Miami
  • Police announced a reward of $3,000 for anyone who can provide information that helps in the investigation

LONDON/JEDDAH: Family and friends of a young Saudi student were in mourning on Wednesday after he was found murdered in his apartment in Miami, Florida. 

The body of Yasser Abualfaraj, 23, was discovered by his roommate on Sunday in a building opposite the University of Miami, where he was studying architecture.

Police have issued a photofit image of a young man seen in the area in the early hours of Sunday, who is wanted for “questioning only.”

“It’s an open investigation and we are working to find any witnesses who may have heard or seen anything at the time,” Det. Chris Thomas of Miami-Dade Police Department told Arab News.

He said the cause of death was unknown and the motive for the murder was unclear. The “investigation is still in the early stages,” Thomas added. 

The police announced a reward of $3,000 for anyone who can provide information that helps in the investigation.

The young man’s fellow students held a vigil in his memory on Monday, and architecture classes were cancelled as a mark of respect.

The Saudi Embassy in Washington said it was aware of the incident and was following the investigation, while providing all necessary support to the family.

Zainab Alsaihati, president of the Saudi Student Association at the University of Miami, said Abualfaraj was “always friendly to new students and helped them with joining clubs and activities. He got involved in volunteering campaigns like cleaning public spaces after Hurricane Irma.”

Abualfaraj’s friend, Mohammed Al-Shawa, told Arab News: “He was a kind, funny and loyal friend. If you knew him well, you would know how much of a good friend he is… I see him as my brother.”


Saudi king leaves for Egypt on official visit

Updated 16 min 25 sec ago
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Saudi king leaves for Egypt on official visit

  • King Salman will head the Saudi delegation at the EU-Arab states summit
  • Ways to strengthen Saudi-Egyptian ties will be discussed during the king’s visit

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s King Salman left for Egypt on Saturday on an official visit, during which he will attend the EU-Arab Summit, the Saudi Press Agency reported.  

The king will head the Saudi delegation at the summit, which is due to be held in Egypt’s Red Sea resort of Sharm El-Sheikh. 

The two-day summit is billed as a starting point for the Arab League and the EU to boost cooperation on shared strategic priorities including migration, security and climate change.

Economic development, the Palestinian question, and the conflicts in Libya, Syria and Yemen are also up for discussion.

The king's visit is a response to an invitation from Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, who will host the two-day summit.

Ways to strengthen Saudi-Egyptian ties will be discussed during the visit.