DiplomaticQuarter: Italian Embassy in Riyadh to host exhibition on water scarcity

Updated 17 January 2019
0

DiplomaticQuarter: Italian Embassy in Riyadh to host exhibition on water scarcity

  • The week-long exhibition features items by international designers, as well as artists from the wider Mediterranean region, related to the different uses of water

The Italian Embassy in Riyadh, in cooperation with Prince Sultan University, will next week host an exhibition about water scarcity and the sustainable use of water.

“The Shapes of Water” will be inaugurated on Jan. 23 by the Italian Ambassador to Riyadh Luca Ferrari and the university’s rector, Dr. Ahmed bin Saleh Al-Yamani.

There will also be a keynote speech from Dr. Marco Sammicheli, chief international relations officer at La Triennale di Milano which is curating the exhibition.

The week-long exhibition features items by international designers, as well as artists from the wider Mediterranean region, related to the different uses of water.

“It aims to address the issue of water scarcity and the sustainable use of water, both themes being of particular relevance nowadays,” an embassy statement said Tuesday.

Entry to the exhibition will be open to the public on a daily basis until Jan. 31. Admission is free but prior online registration is required at the following website: https://bit.ly/2D5ooLi.

Locally renowned artist and designer Noura Bouzo has also contributed to the exhibition, creating an original item inspired by the traditional Islamic water filters that were used many centuries ago across the region.

These ornate objects were used to filter water, keep it cool, and prevent insects from falling in.

They were a reminder of the importance of saving water, the statement said.

The embassy added that the exhibition was an example of the thriving cultural partnership between Italy and Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia ranks among the top five countries in the world in terms of water scarcity, leading the Kingdom to change the way it produces, uses and distributes water to ensure sustainable growth.

About 50 percent of the country’s drinking water comes from desalination, 40 percent from the mining of non-renewable groundwater, and 10 percent from surface water in the mountainous regions, particularly the southwest.


Arab coalition working to protect region’s security, says spokesman

Coalition spokesman Col. Turki Al-Maliki at a press briefing. (SPA file photo)
Updated 19 March 2019
0

Arab coalition working to protect region’s security, says spokesman

  • Houthis want to disturb peace, says coalition spokesman
  • Stockholm peace agreement under strain

RIYADH: The Arab coalition supporting the internationally recognized Yemeni government is committed to protecting regional and global security, a spokesman said Monday.

Coalition spokesman Col. Turki Al-Maliki was asked at a press briefing about Houthi militias threatening to target the capitals of Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

“This is their way to disturb peace,” Al-Maliki replied. “Previously the Houthis targeted Riyadh with a ballistic missile, violating all international laws by attacking a city that has more than 8 million civilians. We take all precautions to protect civilians and vital areas. The coalition works to protect regional and international security.”

Al-Maliki said Houthis had targeted Saudi border towns several times, the most recent incident taking place in Abha last Friday.

But the Saudi Royal Air Defense Force had shot down a drone that was targeting civilians, he added.

He said four Saudi nationals and an Indian expatriate were injured in the attack because of falling debris.

The drone wreckage showed the characteristics and specifications of Iranian manufacturing, he said, which proved Iran was continuing to smuggle arms to the militias.

He warned the Houthis to refrain from targeting civilians because the coalition, in line with international humanitarian law, had every right to counter such threats.

He said the coalition was making efforts to neutralize ballistic missiles and dismantle their capabilities, as the coalition’s joint command would not allow the militia to possess weapons that threatened civilian lives and peace.

Al-Maliki reiterated that the Houthis were targeting Yemeni civilians and continued to violate international laws. 

He also urged Yemenis to try their best to prevent children from being captured by Houthis, who were using them as human shields and child soldiers.

His comments came as the UN tried to salvage a peace deal that was seen as crucial for ending the country’s four-year war.

The Stockholm Agreement was signed by the Yemeni government and Houthi representatives last December.

The main points of the agreement were a prisoner exchange, steps toward a cease-fire in the city of Taiz, and a cease-fire agreement in the city of Hodeidah and its port, as well as ports in Salif and Ras Issa.

Militants triggered the conflict when they seized the capital Sanaa in 2014 and attempted to occupy large parts of the country. An Arab coalition intervened in support of the internationally recognized government in March 2015.

The World Health Organization estimates that nearly 10,000 people have been killed in Yemen since 2015.

Earlier this month US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that President Donald Trump’s administration opposed curbs on American assistance to the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen.

“The way to alleviate the Yemeni people’s suffering isn’t to prolong the conflict by handicapping our partners in the fight, but by giving the Saudi-led coalition the support needed to defeat the Iranian-backed rebels and ensure a just peace,” Pompeo said at a news conference in Washington.