King Fahd Causeway records 107,000 crossings in one day

Updated 12 July 2016

King Fahd Causeway records 107,000 crossings in one day

ALKHOBAR: More than 107,000 passengers in one day crossed the King Fahd Causeway, connecting Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, a record figure in the daily movement of passengers since the causeway opened three decades ago.

The causeway recorded the highest passenger traffic movement 24 hours before the end of Eid vacation for private sector employees. The events and activities held in Bahrain to celebrate Eid Al-Fitr contributed greatly to the increase in passenger movement on the causeway, which is considered one of the most crowded land border crossings during vacations and official holidays, an online publication reported.
The General Directorate of Passports reported that during peak times on holidays and vacations, the travel procedures by one employee on the King Fahd Causeway are conducted for about 400 passengers per hour, considering that the normal rate for any employee, but the number drops if the system crashes because of any technical malfunction.
This comes after the General Organization for King Fahd Causeway launched a platform to track passenger movement in the areas of procedures between the two countries, around the clock, which allows passengers to learn the intensity of traffic on the website,
The organization is working on a project to dispense with the human element from the operations of collecting fees, weighing vehicles, the control system and financial checking with customer service divisions, as well as the smart traffic system for trucks, and the applications with customs and passports.
Work is currently underway to expand the terrestrial area for procedures to coincide with the one-point travel procedure system in order to accommodate the crowding of passengers on the causeway, which last year witnessed traffic of more than 60,000 passengers per day.
On another issue, Tariq Abdul-Jabbar, deputy assistant for domestic airports at the General Authority of Civil Aviation, told a local newspaper that King Khalid International Airport, in Riyadh, has contracted with five international companies that specialize in duty-free markets operating at airports, including Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris, Heathrow in London and the Geneva airport.
Last Saturday, King Khalid International Airport announced on its Twitter account on the closing of the airport’s duty-free shop for renovations. The tweet was met with caustic remarks saying that the airport never had a duty free market in the first place
King Khalid international Airport in Riyadh launched the duty-free shop project at the end of 2014, in an area of 2,200 square meters in the departure lounge. The duty-free market was operated by the World Duty Free Group.

Two Saudis among 31 foreigners killed in Easter Day attacks in Sri Lanka

Updated 4 min 43 sec ago

Two Saudis among 31 foreigners killed in Easter Day attacks in Sri Lanka

  • Mohamed Jafar and Hany Osman, cabin crew with Saudi Arabian Airlines, were in transit and staying at one of the three hotels targeted
  • Saudi Ambassador Abdulnasser Al-Harthi says officials are awaiting the results of DNA tests

COLOMBO: Two Saudis were among 31 foreigners killed in a string of Easter Sunday suicide bombings in Sri Lanka, the Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry said on Monday, a day after the devastating attacks on hotels and churches killed at least 290 people and wounded nearly 500.

The extent of the carnage began to emerge as information from government officials, relatives and media reports offered the first details of those who had died. Citizens from at least eight countries, including the United States, were killed, officials said.

Among them were Saudis Mohammed Jafar and Hany Osman. They worked as cabin crew on Saudi Arabian Airlines, and were in transit and staying at one of the three hotels that were hit.

Saudi Ambassador Abdulnasser Al-Harthi said that officials are awaiting the results of DNA tests on the two Saudi victims, and only after these are received will their names be confirmed.

Cabinet spokesman Rajitha Senaratne said the Sri Lankan government believes the vast scale of the attacks, which clearly targeted the minority Christian community and outsiders, suggested the involvement of an international terrorism network.

“We don’t think a small organization can do all that,” he said. “We are now investigating international support for them and their other links — how they produced the suicide bombers and bombs like this.”

The attacks mostly took place during church services or when hotel guests were sitting down to breakfast. In addition to the two Saudis, officials said the foreign victims included one person from Bangladesh, two from China, eight from India, one from France, one from Japan, one from The Netherlands, one from Portugal, one from Spain, two from Turkey, six from the UK, two people with US and UK dual nationalities, and two with Australian and Sri Lankan dual nationalities.

Three of Danish billionaire Anders Holch Povlsen’s four children were among the foreigners who were killed, a spokesman for the family confirmed. Povlsen is the wealthiest man in Denmark, the largest landowner in Scotland and owns the largest share of British online fashion and cosmetics retailer Asos.

Two Turkish engineers working on a project in Sri Lanka also died in the attacks, the English-language Daily Sabah newspaper reported. Turkey’s foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu gave their names as Serhan Selcuk Narici and Yigit Ali Cavus.

Fourteen foreign nationals remain unaccounted for, the Sri Lankan foreign ministry said, adding that they might be among unidentified victims at the Colombo Judicial Medical Officer’s morgue.

Seventeen foreigners injured in the attacks were still being treated at the Colombo National Hospital and a private hospital in the city, while others had been discharged after treatment.