Saudi Cabinet acclaims royal order to form anti-corruption committee

King Salman presiding over the Cabinet meeting in Riyadh on Monday. (SPA)
Updated 12 November 2017

Saudi Cabinet acclaims royal order to form anti-corruption committee

RIYADH: The Saudi Cabinet on Tuesday appreciated the royal order to form a supreme committee chaired by the crown prince to identify violations, crimes, individuals and entities involved in public corruption cases.
The Cabinet stressed that royal order emanates from the king’s responsibility toward the homeland and citizens and his consideration of the risks of corruption and its bad effects on the state at political, social, economic and security levels.
The weekly meeting was chaired by King Salman at Al-Yamamah Palace in Riyadh.
The king began the session by briefing attendees on the outcome of his talks with US President Donald Trump; Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi; Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe; Italy Premier Paolo Gentiloni; Lebanon Premier Saad Al-Hariri; and Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak.
The Minister of Culture and Information Awwad bin Saleh Al-Awwad said that the Cabinet renewed the Kingdom’s condemnation of the launching of a ballistic missile by Houthi armed militias from Yemeni territories on the capital Riyadh to target populated civilian areas.
The Cabinet stressed that this hostile and indiscriminate action proved Iranian involvement in supporting Houthi armed groups with qualitative capabilities in defiance of the UN resolution 2216. It is considered as an open aggression targeting neighboring countries and international peace and security in the region and the world, and it affirms the Kingdom’s right to legitimate defense of its territory and people under Article 51 of the UN Charter.
Ministers dealt with the World Bank Group’s report on the Kingdom’s unprecedented progress in indicators of the ease of doing business after implementing many reforms and procedures that have improved the business and investment environment, as well as investor confidence.
The report also referred to the Kingdom’s ranking among the top 20 reformist countries in the world, and its position of second among the best high-income countries and G-20 countries in terms of implementing reforms to improve the business environment.
The Cabinet also pointed out the Kingdom’s strong condemnation of a UN committee report that the UN had presented $14 million to the so-called Yemeni Ministry of Education, an affiliate of Houthi militias which are planting thousands of mines inside Yemen and on the Saudi border. It asked for reconsideration of the report submitted to the committee to reflect the facts that had been ignored and the commitment of all UN organs to the relevant Security Council resolutions, including resolution 2216, stressing that UN support for Houthi militias was unjustifiable or unacceptable.
Ministers expressed their condemnation of the recent truck-ramming accident in New York, the suicide bombing in Kabul and the two suicide attacks in Kirkuk, Iraq, which resulted in a number of victims and injuries. It expressed its condolences to the families of the victims, the US administration and people in addition to the governments and peoples of Afghanistan and Iraq.
The Cabinet reiterated the Kingdom’s firm stance rejecting terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and the importance of international efforts to confront and eradicate it.


Saudi Arabia's envoy to UK: We won’t allow Iran to meddle in region 

Updated 25 January 2020

Saudi Arabia's envoy to UK: We won’t allow Iran to meddle in region 

  • “You cannot give in to a country like Iran because they will see it as a sign of weakness,” Prince Khalid said
  • The ambassador encouraged people to visit his country before forming an opinion of it

LONDON: Riyadh does not seek conflict with Tehran but will not let “Iran’s meddling in the region” go unchecked, said the Saudi ambassador to Britain. 
“We do not seek conflict. We do not seek escalation. We have always been supporters of taking a firm stand against Iran. Our issue is not with the people of Iran, it is with the regime running the country,” Prince Khalid bin Bandar bin Sultan told the Daily Telegraph. 
“But we do not believe in appeasement. At no point in history has appeasement proved to be a successful strategy. You cannot give in to a country like Iran because they will see it as a sign of weakness.”
France, Germany and the UK, three of the signatories to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), triggered a “dispute resolution mechanism” recently in response to Iran ramping up its nuclear program in violation of the deal.
Prince Khalid criticized the JCPOA because it does not address “all the other things that Iran” is doing in the region.
“Iran’s meddling in the region is as challenging as the nuclear program. This is why we were concerned with the nuclear deal,” he said.
The ambassador also touched on recent allegations that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was involved in hacking the phone of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
“It is very easy for people to throw these unsubstantiated allegations against Saudi Arabia because they know that it is very difficult for Riyadh to defend itself when it does not have proper access to the details,” Prince Khalid said.
“We need to see the evidence before we make any response, because the evidence made public so far is circumstantial at best.”
Saudis do not always represent themselves well because they are “a reticent people and our culture does not push us to talking about ourselves,” he said. “We need to do a better job on showing the world who we really are.” 
The ambassador, who was appointed last year, encouraged people to visit his country before forming an opinion of it. 
“There are a lot of misconceptions about Saudi Arabia. We want people to come and see Saudi Arabia for themselves, and not rely on what they have read somewhere or heard somewhere to form their opinion of the country,” he said.
“There is plenty to see, and you will find a warm, generous and hospitable people there waiting to greet you.”