Green light for Haj emergency plan

Updated 22 August 2016
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Green light for Haj emergency plan

RIYADH: Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif, deputy premier, minister of interior and chairman of the Supreme Haj Committee, has approved the Civil Defense plan to cope with emergencies during Haj, Director General of Civil Defense Lt. Gen. Sulaiman bin Abdullah Al-Amr said.
He commended Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif and Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for the services provided to ensure that pilgrims perform their Haj rituals in an atmosphere of peace and security.
Al-Amr also commended the efforts made by Makkah Gov. Prince Khalid Al-Faisal and Madinah Gov. Prince Faisal bin Salman, who is Head of Haj Committee in Madinah Region, for their continued support to the Civil Defense in its mission to ensure safety of the guests of Allah during Haj.
He said the plan focused on the utilization of all resources to provide comfort and tranquility to the Hajis.
More than 17,000 officers and security personnel will take part in the implementation of the emergency plan during Haj supported by more than 3,000 equipment, Al-Amr said.
There are also plans concerning evacuation that will be implemented in coordination with other government agencies in case of any emergency during Haj, he said.
He said the emergency plan entails all appropriate measures for the protection of pilgrims in Makkah, Madinah and the holy sites against accidents and disasters. It also aims at protecting private and public properties by following the best possible way in coordination with other government agencies.
The plan also includes launching of awareness campaigns about the safety of pilgrims in housing facilities in Makkah, Madinah and the holy sites in coordination with Haj and Tawafa establishments, he said.
Other awareness campaigns will be run through media, banners and booklets which will be distributed in large numbers among the pilgrims.

Social media and smartphones will also be used to create awareness, he added.
He said the Directorate of Civil Defense has joined the Unified Security Operations Center (911) to exchange reports and carry out joint security operations in collaboration with the security sectors of the Ministry of Interior to deal with crisis and emergencies.


Pitbull and Akon wow crowds at Saudi Arabia’s Asharqiah Music Festival

Updated 20 min 17 sec ago
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Pitbull and Akon wow crowds at Saudi Arabia’s Asharqiah Music Festival

  • Earlier on Friday, planes raced over the waters of the Dammam Corniche, thrilling the crowd who had gathered to see the Red Bull Race
  • Although not the actual championship itself, the demonstration did not disappoint, with pilots pulling their aircraft through barrel rolls and high G-force turns along a floating obstacle course

DAMMAM: Week two of Sharqiah Season started with a bang as US rapper Pitbull performed at Dammam’s Life Park as part of the Asharqiah Music Festival on Friday afternoon.
Although his Thursday night concert was canceled, fans were certainly not disappointed when he took the stage at 4 p.m. An energy-filled Pitbull hyped-up the crowd in minutes, and soon enough everyone was singing along to some of his most famous songs, including “Taxi,” “Timber,” “On The Floor” and more.
The rapper even teased a short sample of his newest song, “Cinco de Mayo,” leading the crowd in the opening chant before launching into the song’s intro.
He thanked his fans multiple times for their understanding over the delay of the concert, telling them how happy he was to have made it.
“I want you to be able to tell people, ‘I went to a Pitbull concert, and I had the time of my life, Saudi Arabia!’” he shouted, before launching into a rendition of “Time of Our Lives.”


Fireworks, confetti and a wildly enthusiastic audience made for a memorable experience.
Arab News caught up with Pitbull backstage after the show. When asked if he had something to say to his fans, he replied: “To everyone in Saudi I wanna say thank you for the love, I appreciate the opportunity. Great crowd, great energy.”
The performance was hastily rescheduled due to the rapper’s delay in Iceland on his way to Saudi Arabia for the festival.
Due to technical difficulties, his plane was grounded and unable to fly until a spare part was delivered from the US, causing him to miss the initial date.
Pitbull posted an apology video on Twitter, in which he promised fans an unforgettable experience at the rescheduled show. “Make sure you keep your tickets,” he told his fans.
Safa Hukrdoh, from Dammam, said she would have preferred to experience the concert at night, but had no complaints. “I think it was amazing. I have been to other concerts outside (of Saudi Arabia), but this is the first time inside.”
The festivities at Life Park continue today as Akon, French Montana and Amr Diab all take the stage for the second evening of the Asharqiah Music Festival.

It is one of 83 events planned for the Sharqiah Season, the first of 11 Saudi Seasons taking place across the country in 2019.
Earlier on Friday, planes raced over the waters of the Dammam Corniche, thrilling the crowd who had gathered to see the Red Bull Race. Although not the actual championship itself, the demonstration did not disappoint, with pilots pulling their aircraft through barrel rolls and high G-force turns along a floating obstacle course.
“It’s been a nice day for the family,” said Mohammed Saleh Al-Ghamdi, who had come out with his wife, his mother-in-law and his three children. “We come here every weekend, and every weekend there is a new surprise waiting.
“This time it is these air races, which my son, Hussam, found really exciting. We all had our photos taken with the planes and ate hamburgers, and now we are going to have some ice cream before the next plane comes out to perform.”
Sharqiah Season is the first of 11 cultural events organized by the General Entertainment Authority, the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, The General Sports Authority and General Culture Authority.
The initiative falls in line with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 program, which aims to improve the quality of life in the Kingdom by providing enriching cultural pursuits and shows. The 83 activities planned for the festival, which is being held in 9 different cities, feature entertainment, educational activities, sports events and culture.
Sharqiah Season continues until March 30, with the weekends ahead also featuring the Formula 1 H20 boat race, as well as concerts in Dammam featuring Deadmau5 among others.