Bodies of two Saudi sisters found bound together beside New York river

A police sketch of the now-identified Tala Farea and Rotana Farea of Fairfax, Va. (Courtesy: NYPD)
Updated 29 October 2018
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Bodies of two Saudi sisters found bound together beside New York river

  • Young women aged 22 and 16 identified by mother from sketch supplied by city police
  • The New York City medical examiner’s office will determine cause of death

JEDDAH: The bodies of two young Saudi women have been discovered bound together on the banks of the Hudson River in New York City.

Rotana Farea, 22, and her sister Tala Farea, 16, were identified on Friday by their mother from a sketch supplied by the New York Police Department (NYPD).

The two bodies were found by a passer-by just before 3 p.m. last Wednesday on the city’s Upper West Side near Riverside Park. The passer-by called police.

NYPD said police responded to the 911 call and “upon arrival, officers discovered two unidentified females unconscious and unresponsive with no obvious signs of trauma.” Emergency medical personnel declared them dead at the scene.

The New York City medical examiner’s office will determine cause of death.

Police lieutenant Paul Ng said the bodies of the two young women were tied together at the feet and waist with what he believed to be duct tape.

Rotana Farea had been living in New York. The young women’s mother lives in the state of Virginia. Both victims are Saudi nationals, from Jeddah.

Members of the family on Sunday denied claims that the two sisters had been missing for two months. In fact, the mother reported her younger daughter Tala as missing two months ago, but the report was withdrawn when she was found visiting her sister in New York, and the search was called off.

While Tala was visiting her elder sister, both young women lost contact with their mother about a week ago, and they were then reported missing. 

The family has also rejected suggestions that the two women committed suicide, and they are awaiting the medical examiner’s findings.

The women’s father arrived in New York three days ago. 

According to close family members, the Saudi consulate in New York City has been informed of the death.


Saudi efforts to promote tolerance, moderation lauded

Updated 23 July 2019
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Saudi efforts to promote tolerance, moderation lauded

RIYADH: The rector of the Islamic University of Brussels hailed Saudi efforts to promote moderate Islam, reject extremism, fight against terrorism, serve the religion and its followers, and respond to aberrant ideologies that have harmed the Muslim world.

Dr. Mustafa Khader Donmez also praised the programs carried out by the Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Dawah and Guidance.

“The Kingdom has established specialized scientific, educational and media institutions, called for the unity of the Islamic nation, and cooperated with all that strengthens the nation’s unity and preserves its security,” he said.

“Saudi Arabia has been holding conferences inside and outside the Kingdom, to which it invited scholars and specialists, in cooperation with regional and international bodies to promote Islamic tolerance and address the causes of extremism and terrorism.”

Donmez said the Kingdom has invited Islamic institutions and international bodies to implement programs and events that fight extremism and condemn terrorism.

“The Kingdom is keen to promote international peace and communication between cultures and the followers of different religions through calling for interreligious and intercultural dialogue, a domain in which the Kingdom has been a pioneer,” he added.

Saudi Arabia “has taken the lead in spending for this purpose as it is in line with its high status on the Islamic and international levels,” he said. SPA Riyadh