FaceOf: Nizar bin Obaid Madani, retired Saudi diplomat

Nizar bin Obaid Madani
Updated 09 January 2019
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FaceOf: Nizar bin Obaid Madani, retired Saudi diplomat

  • He joined the ministry in 1965 and served in various positions. He remained the minister of state for foreign affairs between 2005 and 2019
  • Madani is a prolific writer

After having served his country for over 50 years, Nizar bin Obaid Madani retired from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Jan. 7.

He joined the ministry in 1965 and served in various positions. He remained the minister of state for foreign affairs between 2005 and 2019. 

He began his diplomatic career as an attache, then proceeded to the Saudi Embassy in Washington in 1968 and became charge d’affaires.

Madani participated in many international conferences and was among Saudi Arabia’s delegation at the UN, the Arab League, the Gulf Cooperation Council, and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. He was appointed a member of the Saudi Consultative Council, the Shoura Council, in 1993 and then reappointed in 1997.

He also chaired the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Shoura Council and became a member of the Security Affairs Committee of the council.

He received a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science from Cairo University, a master’s degree in international relations, and a Ph.D. in international relations at the American University in Washington, DC.

Dr. Nizar is a prolific writer. His works have been published by the Diplomatic Studies Institute. Moreover, his latest book was a biography of Prince Saud Al-Faisal, the former Saudi foreign minister who was the longest-serving foreign minister in modern history. The biography was published in 2018 by King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies. 

His autobiography was published in 2009. In his memoirs, he recorded the history of his diplomatic career.  Madani was born in 1941. He belongs to one of the prominent families of the city of Madinah. His father Prof. Obaid Madani, who died in 1976, was a prominent historian and poet who documented the history of Madinah in five volumes.


Saudi Arabia, South Korea reach agreement on visas

King Salman chairs the Cabinet session in Riyadh on Tuesday. (SPA)
Updated 16 January 2019
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Saudi Arabia, South Korea reach agreement on visas

  • Cabinet OKs air transport pact with Indonesia

JEDDAH: The Saudi Cabinet met to discuss a series of national and global developments on Tuesday, in a session chaired by King Salman.

At the forefront of the agenda was the escalation in tensions between Israel and Hamas along the Gaza border, and the continuing encroachment on Palestinian land by Israeli settlers in the West Bank. The Cabinet responded by demanding that the UN Security Council intervene. King Salman also relayed to ministers the outcome of his talks with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, which covered many regional issues.

The minister of media, Turki bin Abdullah Al-Shabanah, announced that after reviewing proposals from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and a decision from the Shoura Council, a memorandum of understanding between the government and the Republic of Korea on granting visit visas had been agreed upon.

The Cabinet approved the amendment of the air agreement on regular air transport between Saudi Arabia and Indonesia.

The Cabinet, meanwhile, praised the progress of the 2025 Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development Program, aimed at enhancing farming techniques by promoting sustainable water and renewable energy sources.

They also discussed the framework in Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program 2020 for building a sustainable renewable energy sector, reiterating aims to lead global renewable energy developments over the next decade, and create projects such as the wind-powered plant at Dumat Al-Jandal, as part of the King Salman Renewable Energy Initiative.

In a statement, though, Al-Shabanah said: “The Cabinet discussed the announcement made by the minister of energy, industry and mineral resources about the Kingdom’s oil and gas reserves, which highlighted the importance of Saudi Arabia as a secure source of oil supplies in the long term.”

He added, in closing, the Cabinet’s praise for the efforts of Saudi security forces in the tracking and arrest of seven people in Qatif, which foiled a planned terrorist attack.