Angry workers burn Saudi Oger vehicles

ANGER: Saudi Oger vehicles are seen burning outside the branch office of the company in Jeddah. (Courtesy photo)
Updated 09 June 2016

Angry workers burn Saudi Oger vehicles

JEDDAH: For the second time in just a few months, 150 expatriate workers of a major contracting company gathered in front of their employer’s office in Jeddah to protest against the delay in their salaries and set fire to a number of company vehicles.
The workers of Saudi Oger company burned a number of buses and heavy vehicles belonging to the company in front of the firm's branch office in Jeddah on Monday. The police prevented the crowd from indulging in further violence and Civil Defense teams extinguished the fires. The workers later dispersed.
“Some 150 expatriate workers gathered in front of Saudi Oger’s branch office in Jeddah at 9 p.m. on Monday. The workers set fire to the company’s vehicles. They were protesting against nonpayment of salaries for six months,” Jeddah police spokesman Atti Al-Qurashi said.
Lately, construction workers have found a new way to express their anger over delayed salaries. Several company buses of the Saudi Binladin Group were previously burned in Makkah.
Gulf-based construction firms have been among the hardest-hit by lower oil prices. Several construction companies suffer from a low number of projects and high costs of their workers’ salaries. Consequently, many construction companies have not been able to pay their workers salaries.
Meanwhile, the Labor and Social Affairs Ministry has transferred workers’ complaints to a special court. Ahmed Al-Ghamdi, director of the media center at the ministry’s branch in Makkah region, said the Labor Office has stopped all services to these companies as result of a violation of the Wage Protection System.
In March 2016, the Labor Ministry took several measures to resolve the issue of some workers’ complaints of delayed salaries. The ministry previously confirmed that it stopped providing its services, including social security and passport affairs, to Saudi Oger Ltd. as part of its punitive steps. The ministry had also formed a committee to address the issues raised by Saudi Oger employees. The Riyadh governorate was expected to coordinate with the committee to resolve the matter.

Saudi Arabia to send Syrians an additional $100 million of humanitarian aid

Updated 26 April 2018

Saudi Arabia to send Syrians an additional $100 million of humanitarian aid

  • Total relief provided by the Kingdom since the war began now stands at about $1billion
  • Latest package announced by Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir at conference in Brussels

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia will provide an additional $100 million of humanitarian aid to alleviate the suffering of the people of Syria, through the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center.

The announcement of the latest aid package was made by Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel bin Ahmed Al-Jubeir on April 25 at an international conference on the future of Syria and the region, held in the Belgian capital Brussels. He pointed out that the meeting comes after the suspected chemical attack in the city of Douma, in eastern Ghouta, which killed dozens of civilians, including women and children.

“The world is facing a regime allied with terrorist militias who believe that spreading atrocities and committing crimes will bring victory to it, and that war crimes are bearing fruit,” said Al-Jubeir. “In addition to bombing civilians with explosive barrels, the policies of starvation and siege, ethnic and sectarian cleansing, and the demographic change of Syrian cities and towns, its use of chemical weapons have shocked the entire world.”

He said that the only acceptable solution to the Syrian crisis is a peaceful political resolution, and that Saudi Arabia has been working to achieve this since the crisis began, while also working with others to end the continuing human tragedy in the war-torn country.

The Kingdom has played a role in unifying the ranks of the Syrian opposition and encouraging them to speak with one voice, he added. After the Riyadh 1 Conference in 2015, Saudi Arabia hosted the Riyadh 2 conference for the Syrian opposition in November 2017, which succeeded in unifying the factions and establishing a negotiating body to take part in the rounds of talks held since then, earning praise from the United Nations.

The foreign minister also reiterated his country’s support for the efforts of the UN secretary-general’s envoy, Stephan de Mistura, to resume negotiations between all sides of the conflict.

“The Kingdom hopes that the agreements endorsed by the international resolutions on the ceasefire and the delivery of humanitarian aid to its beneficiaries will be implemented throughout Syria, regardless of their ethnic, religious, sectarian or political affiliations, and calls for the speedy release of detainees and abductees and clarifying the situation of those absent,” said Al-Jubeir. “It also renews its demand to punish individuals and institutions for war crimes and to prevent their impunity.”

He added that the worsening humanitarian crisis affecting refugees inside and outside of Syria should add to the urgency of finding a political solution and resuming the negotiating process as soon as possible.

Since the war began, the Kingdom has taken in about two and a half million Syrians and treats them like its own citizens, Al-Jubeir said, providing them with free health care, work and education. Saudi universities and schools have more than 140,000 Syrian students. He added that Saudi Arabia is also supporting and helping to care for of millions of Syrian refugees in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon, in coordination with the governments of those countries. The humanitarian assistance provided so far totals about $1 billion.