UAE foreign minister warns Europe over terror threat

UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al-Nahyan addresses the Tweeps 2017 Forum in Riyadh Sunday.
Updated 22 May 2017

UAE foreign minister warns Europe over terror threat

RIYADH: The UAE’s foreign minister has warned Europe that some countries could be classified as “incubators of terrorism” if they fail to better address extremism.
Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al-Nahyan said that such countries should be publicly identified if they did not do more to address terror.
“Saudi Arabia is more keen to fight terrorism than the… Europeans,” Sheikh Abdullah said during the Tweeps Forum 2017. “The voices we hear calling for murder and shedding blood and stealing the wealth of people are in London, Germany, Spain and Italy.
“There will come a day when we see far more radicals, extremists and terrorists coming from Europe because of (a) lack of decision-making, and trying to be politically correct.
“From now on, we will name and shame these countries. We will classify them as incubators of terror if they don’t address this problem of terrorism in their lands.”
The Saudi and UAE foreign ministers took part of a panel discussion on digital responses to extremism, which was moderated by Francine Lacqua, anchor and editor-at-large at Bloomberg TV.
The two ministers discussed tackling the promotion of extremism on social media, with Al-Nahyan calling for wider criminalization of terrorist content on the Internet.
“Social media (players) must realize that there is content that is exploited by extremist and terrorist groups that want to recruit our sons and daughters and want to hijack religion,” the UAE minister said.
“Unfortunately, there is a legislative vacuum at the international level to criminalize this content.”
He pointed out that there is a responsibility for countries to legislate their national laws with the participation of international organizations and conventions.
He added that the establishment of a Global Center for Combatting Extremist Ideology, which was one of the outcomes of the US-Saudi summit, is a huge step by the Kingdom to confront radical thought.
Meanwhile, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said that one of the challenges is not knowing the identity of users on social media sites.
However, companies have began to cooperate more by identifying those who instigate or plan terrorist acts, and it is only a matter of time before there is an effective mechanism that doesn’t affect the freedom of legitimate users.
“There must be a way of knowing who will misuse these means,” Al-Jubeir said.


Riyadh Season Boulevard zone opens with spectacular parade

Updated 18 October 2019

Riyadh Season Boulevard zone opens with spectacular parade

  • The Riyadh parade is thought to be the biggest parade in Kingdom to date

RIYADH: More than 1,500 performers and 25 floats took part in a parade and carnival on Thursday night that officially launched Riyadh Season’s Boulevard zone. The crowds that gathered for the fun-packed event were also treated to motorcycle displays, fireworks and other surprises.

The Boulevard lit up at 9 p.m. for the start of the 90-minute event, which featured some of the international artists who will perform as part of Riyadh Season. Afterwards, the zone’s food and drink outlets, outdoor cinema and fountain shows officially opened.

The audience watched the parade, performances and displays from specially constructed stands. Food trucks offered a selection of tasty snacks, and organizers also provided prayer rooms, toilets, first-aid stations and other facilities.



In addition to the opening-night festivities, the Boulevard zone, which covers 400,000 square meters, will host a wide range of entertainment options and activities for all ages, including the outdoor cinema, restaurants, and sports, music and theatrical events. It has three main venues: The 22,000-seat Mohammed Abdu Theater, the 6,000-seat Abu Bakr Salem Theater, and the 2,000-seat Baker Al-Sheddi Theater.

The parade is just one of more than 100 events featuring local, regional and international performers taking place during the Riyadh Season festival, which continues until mid-December at 12 zones across the city: the Boulevard; the Front; Riyadh Car Show; Winter Wonderland; Riyadh Stadiums; the Diplomatic Quarter; Al-Muraba’a; Al-Malaz; Wadi Namar; Nabd Al-Riyadh; Riyadh Safari; and Riyadh Sahara. It has been organized with the support of Turki Al-Sheikh, chairman of the General Entertainment Authority and president of Riyadh Season.

The audience watched the parade from specially built stands. (Supplied)

 

The ambitious 2019 Saudi Seasons initiative, the first of its kind in the region, was launched in February and includes 11 local seasons covering most parts of the Kingdom. Designed to promote the fledgling Saudi entertainment sector and boost tourism, it is attracting some of the biggest names in world entertainment.

The Riyadh parade is thought to be the biggest parade in Kingdom to date. It follows a folklore parade at the Mawtni (My Nation) cultural event in Yanbu to mark Saudi National Day this year, and a parade during the Jeddah Season festivities in the city’s Obhur district.