‘No ambulance service for woman living by herself’

Updated 03 May 2014

‘No ambulance service for woman living by herself’

A Saudi woman was allegedly refused an ambulance service because she did not have a male guardian present with her in the house.
Salma Al-Shuhab had woken up in the middle of the night with severe headache and called the Saudi Red Crescent, only to have her request rejected when the call center learned that she lived alone.
“I couldn’t just go out onto the street looking for a taxi at 4 a.m., so I called the ambulance because I couldn’t bear the pain until dawn,” she said. “The employee asked me routine questions, including my age, my address and other details. It was only when he learned that I live alone that he said he could not send me an ambulance. He then left the phone for a few minutes and came back to tell me the same thing.”
“I asked him if I should be left to die,” she said. “I had to look through my phonebook for 15 minutes until I found the number of a driver. Is this humane?”
Ahmed Al-Enzi, official spokesman for the Saudi Red Crescent in Riyadh, said ambulance services are in sync with international standards.
“The organization extends medical help regardless of race or gender around the clock,” he said. “We will launch an extensive investigation into this complaint. We will also check the call log that day.”


DiplomaticQuarter: US ambassador lauds Saudi Arabia for successful Hajj season

Updated 59 min 31 sec ago

DiplomaticQuarter: US ambassador lauds Saudi Arabia for successful Hajj season

  • The envoy also praised Saudi hospitality during the Hajj season

RIYADH: US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia John Abizaid has lauded the Kingdom for its successful and safe organization of the curtailed Hajj pilgrimage amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. 

The envoy also praised Saudi hospitality during the Hajj season and expressed his appreciation for the country’s generosity.

“On behalf of the US Mission to Saudi Arabia, I extend our best wishes to all Muslims in Saudi Arabia and around the world on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha,” Abizaid said in a statement.

He thanked the Saudi leadership for the care and services provided to the specially selected group of around 1,000 pilgrims of various nationalities allowed to perform Hajj.

“I would also like to express our deep appreciation to King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Mohammed Saleh Benten, and Minister of Islamic Affairs Sheikh Dr. Abdullatif Al-Asheikh for the government’s actions to protect the health of those participating in this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. 

“I also extend our gratitude to the people of Saudi Arabia for their kind hospitality, friendship, and generosity during Eid and throughout the eight decades of our two countries’ close partnership. May the prayers for peace of all people around the world be heard,” he added.

Separately, the World Health Organization (WHO) also commended Saudi Arabia for its efforts in organizing Hajj.

WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus praised the steps taken by the Kingdom to ensure the safety of pilgrims and said the preventive measures had set an example for other countries to follow in working toward lifting COVID-19 restrictions.