Egyptian lawyer gets 5 years for drug trafficking

Updated 16 January 2013
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Egyptian lawyer gets 5 years for drug trafficking

JEDDAH: A Jeddah court on Tuesday convicted Egyptian lawyer Ahmed Al-Gizawi on drug trafficking charges and sentenced him to five years in prison and 300 lashes.
Another Egyptian, arrested over the same case, was sentenced to four years in prison and 400 lashes, while their Saudi partner was jailed for two years and will get 100 lashes.
Al-Gizawi was arrested in April 2012 after he was allegedly caught trying to smuggle into the kingdom 21,380 capsules of the anti-anxiety drug Xanax, which is banned in Saudi Arabia.
The prosecution, which alleged that Gizawi had hidden the banned substance in two milk cartons and a cover for the Qur'an, had demanded the death penalty for the accused.
But the judge, admitting that the "verdicts are lenient,” cited the defendants’ “good morals ... and the lack of judicial precedents.”
The verdicts can be appealed within one month.
Gizawi had traveled last year to Saudi Arabia with his wife to perform the Umrar in Makkah and Medina, when he was detained at the Jeddah international airport.
Gizawi's case sparked a diplomatic row, with the kingdom withdrawing its ambassador in Cairo amid threats from Egyptian protesters who had been demonstrating outside the Saudi Embassy.
The Egyptian organization Arabic Network for Human Rights Information claimed that Gizawi was being targeted for his activism over Egyptian detainees in Saudi prisons. a charged strong denied by Saudi officials.
The embassy reopened on May 4 following a fence-mending visit to Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah by a large delegation of prominent Egyptian figures.


Hodeidah offensive: Coalition forces seize weapons supplied by Iran to Houthis

Updated 20 June 2018
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Hodeidah offensive: Coalition forces seize weapons supplied by Iran to Houthis

  • The arsenal included drones, a sniper rifle, roadside bombs disguised as rocks and even a “drone boat” which had been filled with explosives that failed to detonate.
  • Equipment used to produce and load fuel for rockets that target Saudi Arabia contained Iranian labels.

JEDDAH: Saudi-led coalition officials on Tuesday displayed weapons and explosives supplied by Iran to Houthi militias in the Yemeni port city of Hodeidah. 

The arsenal included drones, a sniper rifle, roadside bombs disguised as rocks and even a “drone boat” which had been filled with explosives that failed to detonate.

Equipment used to produce and load fuel for rockets that target Saudi Arabia contained Iranian labels. The weapons were captured on the battlefield in Hodeidah and displayed at a military base in the UAE. 

“Unsurprisingly, there are advanced military components in the Houthi militias’ hands,” said Talal Al-Teneiji, an official at the UAE Foreign Ministry.

“We took time to inspect and disassemble these to figure out the source ... and we can say that these elements are military-grade materials imported from Iran to the Houthi militias.”

As the week-long offensive in Hodeidah intensified on Tuesday, coalition forces consolidated their grip on the city’s airport and there was new fighting on the main coast road leading to the city center, with Apache helicopters providing air support to the coalition. 

“We can hear the sounds of artillery, mortars and sporadic machinegun fire. The Houthis have been using tanks,” one civilian on the coastal strip said. 

“Water has been cut off to many of the areas near the corniche area because the Houthis have dug trenches and closed water pipes.”

At the airport, which the coalition has controlled since Saturday, their forces stormed the main compound and took full command.

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said: “We are waiting for the Houthis to realize the sort of military and psychological blow that they got with the airport ... we are giving them time to decide if they want to save the city ... and pull out.”

Oubai Shahbandar, a strategic communications adviser, told Arab News that “without the sea and airport of Hodeidah, the Houthi militia has effectively lost the war.”

They should agree to UN-hosted peace talks and not prolong the fighting. “The tide in this conflict has clearly turned in favor of the Arab coalition and the welfare of the Yemeni people ought to be paramount,” he said.