Spanish visit fruitful: Prince Salman

Updated 30 June 2012

Spanish visit fruitful: Prince Salman

Defense Minister Prince Salman yesterday emphasized Saudi Arabia’s desire to strengthen its relations with Spain. He thanked the Spanish government for according a warm welcome to him and his delegation during his official visit to the country.
In a cable sent to his Spanish counterpart Pedro Morenes at the conclusion of his official visit, Prince Salman highlighted the deep-rooted relations between the two countries. Prince Salman began his private vacation yesterday.
Speaking to the Saudi Press Agency, Prince Salman said his visit to Spain was fruitful, adding that both countries would benefit from it. “I have conveyed the greetings of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah to King Juan Carlos of Spain,” he said.
The defense minister said Saudi Arabia and Spain have identical views on all issues discussed during his meetings with King Carlos, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, Defense Minister Morenes and Foreign Minister José Manuel.
“What makes our ties with Spain important is the close relationship between the two leaderships and peoples and we desire to strengthen these relations in all fields, especially defense, through visits and meetings of officials,” the minister said.
He said he was happy to visit Spain and wished greater progress and prosperity for Spanish people.
Earlier, he was seen off at the airport in Madrid by Prince Mansour bin Khaled, Saudi ambassador to Spain, Prince Faisal bin Salman, chairman of Saudi Research & Marketing Group, and Brig. Abdullah Al-Shammari, military attaché.
Prince Salman was accompanied by Prince Muhammad bin Salman, special adviser, as well as Prince Turki bin Salman, Prince Khaled bin Salman, Prince Naif bin Salman and Prince Bandar bin Salman.
Prince Salman arrived here Wednesday at the head of a high-level delegation. Morenes welcomed Prince Salman and his accompanying delegation and wished them a happy stay in Spain. "The visit of Prince Salman reflects the strong relations between Saudi Arabia and Spain," the Spanish minister said.


Pilgrims from all nationalities took part in Saudi National Day

Updated 17 min 34 sec ago

Pilgrims from all nationalities took part in Saudi National Day

  • A number of pilgrims from various nationalities participated in a national initiative, organized by the Hadiya Association, in the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah
  • This is the first time that pilgrims, who have now finished their rituals and will leave on Sept. 25, have celebrated this special day with all of the people of Saudi Arabia

MAKKAH: Pilgrims from all nationalities took part in the celebrations to mark the 88th Saudi National Day, paying thanks to the Saudi government for the services provided to the two Holy Mosques.

After Saudi Arabia announced the success of this year’s Hajj season, the Umrah season kicked off. It also began to receive pilgrims from all nationalities, all of whom stressed that they cannot forget Saudi Arabia’s support in granting them their rights and helping them throughout their economic hardships.

“Every year I come to Saudi Arabia for Umrah. I am used to performing Umrah every year, but this year is special because it coincides with the National Saudi Day,” said Hamdi Abul-Enein, from Egypt, adding: “For the first time in my life I see the Saudi people celebrating their National Day, reflecting the cohesion between the citizens and their leadership. This is not surprising because we know the core of Saudi people are keen on the security and stability of the country.”

Hamdi added: “In Egypt, we share the joys of the Saudi people. For decades, there have been strong ties between Egyptians and our Saudi brothers. Sincere ties based on the Islamic religion joins us. Congratulations to Saudi Arabia and its citizens.”

Ali Al-Saradi, a pilgrim from Yemen, said: “I roamed the streets of Makkah and Medinah, and found people celebrating the national day. We admire the unity and loyalty of our Saudi brothers to their leadership. I am keen on sharing these celebrations with my Saudi brothers. In Yemen, we are happy for the Saudi citizens’ happiness. We consider them as our brothers and therefore we are happy for their joys and are sad for their sadness.”

Kuwaiti pilgrim, Abdullah Al-Ajami said: “This occasion is not only celebrated by the Saudi people, but also by all those who love this country. I can confirm that the rulers of this country are very generous and put all efforts to serve the two holy mosques. So it is no surprise to see so many nationalities celebrating the National Saudi Day.”

“The Saudi leadership and people stood with their Kuwaiti brothers during the brutal invasion; they opened their hearts before their homes. They were the first to work for the liberation of our country, and this is what strengthened the blood ties between us for decades. I ask God to perpetuate their joys,” he added.

The Hadiya Association involved pilgrims and visitors in celebrating the 88th National Day Festival.

A number of pilgrims from various nationalities participated in a national initiative, organized by the Hadiya Association, held during a reception and farewell for pilgrims, in the holy cities of Makkah and Madinah.

The Association distributed Saudi flags and gifts to the pilgrims. They received traditional Saudi hospitality and were given a presentation on the National Project, conducted in sign language in order to engage deaf people in the celebrations for the first time. The presentation, which was part of the Association’s project entitled “Nourishment of the Soul”, was conducted in 67 languages with the participation of both volunteers and multi-national students currently on scholarships in Saudi universities.

The Director General of the Association, Sheikh Mansoor Al Amer, expressed his joy seeing the pilgrims enthusiasm and willingness to engage in the celebrations for Saudi National Day, which commemorates the unification of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and expresses appreciation of the services provided by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques during their spiritual journey in Makkah, Madinah, and Al Mashaaer Al Mugaddassah.

This is the first time that pilgrims, who have now finished their rituals and will leave on Sept. 25, have celebrated this special day with all of the people of Saudi Arabia, in what has widely been seen as a practical application of the Kingdom’s new 2030 vision.

Sheikh Al Amer added that a number of volunteers from different fields were cooperating with the association. They have circulated a clip on social media showing the Saudi national anthem being translated into sign language. The anthem was produced in association with Saleh Bin Hamood Al Nefaie, a sign language translator for the Friday sermon, which is regularly broadcasted from the Holy Mosque in Makkah and aired on the Qur’an Channel.