SR12m iftar meals for refugees

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Updated 12 June 2015
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SR12m iftar meals for refugees

JEDDAH: Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif, deputy premier and minister of interior, has allocated SR12 million to supply iftar meals to Syrian refugees and Somalis during the fasting month of Ramadan.
The allocation came on the instructions of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman, said Saed Al-Arabi Al-Harthi, adviser to the interior minister and head of relief committees and campaigns.
He said the total value of iftar meals approved by the crown prince amounted to SR12.39 million, adding that it would be distributed among Syrian refugees in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey as well as among the Somalis.
“Preparations have been made for the distribution of iftar meals in these countries through the Saudi Relief Campaign offices in those countries,” said Al-Harthi, adding that 30,000 baskets of foodstuffs will be distributed in Lebanon, 300,000 in Turkey, 6,000 in Jordan and 30,000 in Somalia.
The program is designed to meet the needs of families during the holy month of Ramadan, Al-Harthi said. “We’ll distribute the meals with the support of national and international relief organizations,” he added.
He said Saudi Arabia has so far spent more than SR1.41 billion on humanitarian activities for Syrians and Somalis by implementing 176 relief programs, which included supply of foodstuffs and medicine and social, health and educational services.


Christchurch Muslims praise King Salman’s Hajj offer

Updated 55 min 10 sec ago
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Christchurch Muslims praise King Salman’s Hajj offer

  • The president of the Muslim Association of Canterbury Shagaf Khan said people will be both financially and spiritually supported during the journey
  • Khan said a trip to Makkah would normally cost around 10,000 New Zealand dollars ($6,769), but King Salman’s offer would cover pilgrims “from the time they leave their house and come back”

CHRISTCHURCH: King Salman’s Hajj offer to host families of those affected by March’s Christchurch terror attacks is “something really special,” said the president of the Muslim Association of Canterbury, Shagaf Khan.
The Saudi king has offered to host and cover the expenses of 200 Hajj pilgrims when they journey to Makkah this year.
Khan said people will be both financially and spiritually supported during the journey. “For some of them, it’ll be a great comfort feeling like they’ve fulfilled the obligations of being a Muslim,” he added.
Khan said a trip to Makkah would normally cost around 10,000 New Zealand dollars ($6,769), but King Salman’s offer would cover pilgrims “from the time they leave their house and come back.”
When asked what the offer would mean for Canterbury’s Muslim community, Khan said it is part of the solidarity and support that has been shown to them since the Christchurch terror attacks, which claimed the lives of 51 people.
“Four months on … people still feel supported and they feel they’re still being remembered,” he added.
Sheikh Mohammed Amir, who is working closely with the local community, Saudi Arabia’s Embassy and its Ministry of Islamic Affairs to implement King Salman’s offer, said it will be available for those who had lost family members or been injured in the mosque attacks.
Canterbury’s Muslims are “very appreciative” of the offer, added Amir, who is chairman of the Islamic Scholars Board of New Zealand.
“I’ll say with full confidence that this will be a big relief for the deceased’s families, for the victims, for all those who’ve been injured and affected,” he said.
When asked how the organization of the pilgrimage is going, Amir said “so far, so good,” but added that it has been challenging without official records to track everyone down.
He said it is an honor and a responsibility to help organize the pilgrimage, which he has been helping to plan since the end of Ramadan. “People are very excited about it,” he added.
He said he believed that the king’s offer had been made to help people’s rehabilitation after the terror attacks.
“The community believes he’s going to contribute in building Christchurch and bringing people to a normal life,” Amir added.