Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman speaks with Donald Trump on Iran

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman spoke with US President Donald Trump on Friday to about Middle East stability and the oil market. (SPA/AFP)
Updated 21 June 2019
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Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman speaks with Donald Trump on Iran

  • Two leaders spoke a day after Trump confirmed that he canceled a military strike against Iran
  • Trump has been stepping up a “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran

WASHINGTON: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman spoke with US President Donald Trump on Friday to about Middle East stability and the oil market, the White House said, after tensions with Iran prompted a rise in oil prices.
“The two leaders discussed Saudi Arabia’s critical role in ensuring stability in the Middle East and in the global oil market. They also discussed the threat posed by the Iranian regime’s escalatory behavior,” White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said in a statement.

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The White House says the two leaders spoke a day after Trump confirmed that he canceled a military strike against Iran on Thursday after Iran downed a US drone that it says was operating over Iranian airspace. The US says the drone had been flying over international waters when it was attacked.
Trump has been stepping up a “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran and has blamed Iran for recent attacks on oil tankers moving through the strategic Strait of Hormuz.


Saudi Ports Authority launches plan for Hajj pilgrims arriving by sea

Updated 14 min 46 sec ago
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Saudi Ports Authority launches plan for Hajj pilgrims arriving by sea

  • Jeddah Islamic Port will start receiving pilgrims on July 17 until Aug. 6.
  • Yanbu Commercial Port also has a terminal to receive pilgrims

JEDDAH: The Saudi Ports Authority has prepared a comprehensive operational plan to receive pilgrims arriving by sea through the Jeddah Islamic Port during this year’s Hajj season.

The authority, in cooperation with different government sectors and agencies, seeks to ensure pilgrims’ comfort, and facilitate performance of the Hajj from the moment they arrive in the Kingdom until they return home.

The port will start receiving pilgrims on July 17 until Aug. 6. Some 22,000 are expected to use it, an increase on last year’s 16,000.

The port’s terminal has been equipped to accommodate over 800 people per hour. It comprises five lounges, three for arrivals and two for departures. All of the lounges are equipped with the necessary facilities and equipment to serve pilgrims and help them complete their entry and exit procedures.

The operational equipment includes 14 sophisticated devices for searching and transporting baggage, 700 luggage trolleys, and 28 new buses.

Over 266 personnel will serve pilgrims at the port during this year’s Hajj season. These include maritime pilots, ship captains, technical and operational supervisors, security teams, and staff responsible for operations at the station as well as the management of technical affairs.

Yanbu Commercial Port also has a terminal for receiving pilgrims, having been recently expanded from 3,600 square meters to 7,200 square meters, with its capacity growing from 1,000 passengers to 2,800. It has also been equipped with four new X-ray baggage scanners and an integrated health system that includes a pharmacy and medical clinics.

The Port of Daba has started receiving seasonal workers to serve this year’s pilgrims, and it is expected to receive 40,000 pilgrims throughout this year’s Hajj season.