Saudi-Lebanese style star Alanoud Badr raises awareness for international Rare Disease Day

Saudi-Lebanese style star Alanoud Badr raises awareness for international Rare Disease Day
Alanoud Badr is taking part in an event organized by High Hopes Dubai. (@fozaza)
Updated 27 February 2018

Saudi-Lebanese style star Alanoud Badr raises awareness for international Rare Disease Day

Saudi-Lebanese style star Alanoud Badr raises awareness for international Rare Disease Day

DUBAI: Saudi-Lebanese fashion blogger Alanoud Badr is calling for support on international Rare Disease Day, which lands on Feb. 28.
The style-savvy social media star is calling on her more than 550,000 Instagram followers to join a Feb. 28 walk-a-thon in Dubai to raise awareness for rare diseases, encourage diagnosis and improve access to treatment and medical representation for individuals with rare diseases and their families.
The walk was organized by High Hopes Dubai, a pediatric therapy center for children with special needs.
“In line with the Year of Zayed and Dubai's vision of tolerance and inclusion, we are thrilled to be heading a united walk in Dubai,” the center posted on its social media pages.
“What a day. One great event and collaboration and another fantastic cause ahead! Walking toward the week with so much hope, faith and love,” Badr posted on her Instagram account, @fozaza.
“I will be proudly walking for
rare disease day with
@highhopesdubai… alongside all those amazing warrior moms and angelic kids with rare genetic disorders who are incredible human beings fighting to live a close to normal life… This walk is open to the public and is part of an international movement all over the world. Be part of it,” she added.
The event in Dubai is just one of 400 events in 80 countries organized as part of the 11th international Rare Disease Day.
Based in Dubai, Badr is a regular fixture on the UAE’s fashion scene and even has her own brand called Lady Fozaza, which she launched in 2011.


Arab-Japan Day serves as reminder of long-standing friendship

To celebrate the opening of Arab-Japan Day, an online event was held on April 21 attended by many notable figures including Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide. (Supplied)
To celebrate the opening of Arab-Japan Day, an online event was held on April 21 attended by many notable figures including Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide. (Supplied)
Updated 21 April 2021

Arab-Japan Day serves as reminder of long-standing friendship

To celebrate the opening of Arab-Japan Day, an online event was held on April 21 attended by many notable figures including Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide. (Supplied)
  • Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide renewed his respect to all members committed to fortifying relations between both Japan and Arab nations

TOKYO: To celebrate the opening of Arab-Japan Day, an online event was held on April 21 attended by many notable figures including Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide who delivered a speech.

The celebration was divided into two sessions, and the first commenced with welcoming remarks by Rachad Bouhlal, Ambassador of the Kingdom of Morocco and Chair of the Council of Arab Ambassadors, the meeting was also chaired by Symantec Kamal, Ambassador of Egypt. 

Waleed Siam, Ambassador of Palestine, Dean of Arab Diplomatic Corps also gave a speech in which he thanked Japan for its support to the Palestinian cause.

“Japan attaches great importance to the long-standing friendly relations with the Arab countries. I remember very well the hospitality I received during my visit to Egypt, Palestine, Syria and Jordan 20 some years ago as a Diet member,” he said.

During his speech, Suga renewed his respect to all members committed to fortifying relations between both Japan and Arab nations.

“The peace and stability of the Middle East is vital for the entire international community as the region provides energy resources to the world and is strategically located from a geopolitical perspective,” Suga added.

Amidst his praise, Suga reflected on the difficulties and hardships faced by the Arab region, highlighting the global impacts of COVID-19 and reiterating Japan’s support and readiness to deliver assistance.

Outlining the programs offered by Japan, Suga asserted that he is confident “these programs steadily contribute to the regional stability and development.”

Suga also touched on Japan’s contribution to ensuring delivery and access of vaccines to Arab countries through their financial support of the COVAX Facility.

“I would like to work together with Arab friends to overcome this unprecedented crisis,” Suga said, expressing hope for stronger Japan-Arab relations in the future.

Suga concluded by wishing everyone Ramadan Mubarak and expressing thanks.  

Other important figures who spoke at the event include Tokyo Governor KOIKE Yuriko and Regulatory Reform Minister KONO Taro.

Speaking in English, Governor Koike greeted the audience in Arabic before highlighting the primary issues faced today, including COVID-19 and the climate crisis, placing emphasis on the importance of human connection during troubled times to find solutions.

“This Arab-Japan day is true proof of the friendship between us which remains unchanged no matter what hardships we face. May I close by extending my most heartfelt congratulations today,” she said.

“We are very much looking forward to deepening the relationship in spite of COVID-19,” Minister Kono reiterated. 

Kono hopes Arab nations and Japan can deepen their relationship in terms of politics and regional security.

As the minister in charge of the vaccine roll out, Kono spoke openly regarding his concern over ‘vaccine nationalism’ spreading around the world, stressing unity among us. Kono also shared hope that Japan and Arab nations can work together in the fight against COVID-19.

Kono shared regret at not being able to visit the region for some time due to the ramifications of the pandemic but intends to once matters improve.

Other speakers that participated during the first session include Saiki Akitaka, President of the Middle East Institute of Japan who delivered the keynote speech. 

The second session included a panel discussion followed by a Q&A, moderated by Ayman Kamel, Ambassador of the Arab Republic of Egypt.

Sasaki Nobuhiko, Chairman and CEO of JETRO, Karube Jun, Chairman of Toyota Tsusho, and  Morikawa Keizo, President of Japan Arab Association took part in the panel.


Chile vets fined for giving dog vaccines against COVID-19

Chile vets fined for giving dog vaccines against COVID-19
Migrant woman and a child kiss during a gathering to regulate their immigration status at Chile where two vets were fined on Wednesday for giving dog vaccines against COVID-19. (Reuters)
Updated 21 April 2021

Chile vets fined for giving dog vaccines against COVID-19

Chile vets fined for giving dog vaccines against COVID-19

SANTIAGO: Health authorities in northern Chile have fined two veterinarians they say were giving or promoting canine vaccines as false protection against COVID-19.
Roxana Díaz, deputy health secretary for Antofagasta province, said her agency’s workers had gone to the veterinary practice of Maria Fernanda Muñoz in the city of Calama over a report that people there weren’t using masks and were told it was because they were vaccinated.
In an interview Tuesday with the government’s 24 Horas television channel, Muñoz acknowledged giving herself and several people in her office a vaccine aimed at canine coronavirus, and argued she hadn’t become ill. That occurred last year, before any COVID vaccines had been approved in Chile.
“The truth is, it’s very dangerous,” Díaz said. “There are studies that say the effects can be local – irritation caused by the medications it has – or systemic. But we haven’t done a study of what happens inoculating a person with canine vaccines because that would be unethical.”
The US based VCA veterinary hospital chain includes a reference on its website warning against confusing the new human coronavirus — one of a broad family of viruses that affect many species — with the one that causes an intestinal ailment in dogs that is targeted by canine vaccines.
Díaz said another veterinarian, Carlos Pardo, had been falsely promoting use of the canine vaccine for humans.
The health department fined Pardo the equivalent of about $9,200 and Muñoz about $10,300. Both have appealed.
Chile has now vaccinated 7.7 million of its 19 million people with at least one dose of legitimate COVID-19 vaccines.


In Gaza, Christians share in the spirit of Ramadan

In Gaza, Christians share in the spirit of Ramadan
Updated 21 April 2021

In Gaza, Christians share in the spirit of Ramadan

In Gaza, Christians share in the spirit of Ramadan
  • According to church statistics, there are 390 Christian families living in Gaza among roughly 2 million Muslims
  • As is the prevailing custom among Gazans, Tarazi said she traditionally cooks Mulukhiya on the first day of Ramadan

GAZA CITY: Many Christians in the Gaza Strip participate in the customs and rituals of Ramadan, Sanaa Tarazi, secretary of the Supreme Presidential Committee for Churches Affairs, told Arab News. She stressed that Christians in Gaza are “an integral part of the Palestinian people.”
According to church statistics, there are 390 Christian families, with an estimated 1,313 members, living in Gaza among roughly 2 million Muslims.
“No one can distinguish a Muslim from a Christian, for we are all close neighbors, having a bond of love and affection between us,” Tarazi said.

Tarazi grew up in her family’s home in the heart of old Gaza. Ramadan, she said, is a month of “beautiful childhood memories” when she and her friends from the neighborhood would play with lanterns and fireworks in the streets, transforming night into day.
She has passed that love on to her two children, who are currently studying abroad, decorating the house with lanterns and other ornaments every Ramadan.

“Our eating and drinking habits change greatly during Ramadan,” she said, “Many days, we will (forego) lunch and eat at the Maghrib (evening) prayer call.” She added that she is careful to delay cooking her family’s food so that the smell will not disturb her Muslim neighbors when they are fasting.
As is the prevailing custom among Gazans, Tarazi said she traditionally cooks Mulukhiya on the first day of Ramadan, in anticipation of a good and blessed year.
She and her neighbors exchange Ramadan food and sweets. Tarazi said she makes Qatayef at home to distribute to her Muslim and Christian neighbors throughout Ramadan.

Tarazi’s husband, Majed — leader of the Arab Orthodox Scouts in Gaza, shares her love for the Muslim holy month. He told Arab News that Ramadan nights out with friends are a “special experience” and that this year, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, he is missing a number of the usual Ramadan rituals with his many Muslim friends.
The scouts are often deployed on Gaza’s streets during Ramadan to distribute water and dates to those returning home late after work before iftar, he explained. The scouts also normally host an iftar at the Greek Orthodox Church in Gaza, but it has been canceled this month, for the second year in a row. “We host that iftar at the church to express tolerance and show the depth of the relations with Muslims that bind us in Gaza,” he said.

He pointed to the historic minaret of the Kateb Wilaya mosque, which dates back to the early 14th century CE and overlooks the church. “This is our relationship: Loving neighbors, partners in the homeland, sharing a common destiny,” he said.
“Just as our Muslim brothers congratulate us on our religious occasions, and they share our joys and sorrows, we exchange love and respect with them, and we appreciate the holiness of their rituals and religious occasions,” he added.


Vimto squash is no longer suitable for vegans

Vimto squash is no longer suitable for vegans
Updated 21 April 2021

Vimto squash is no longer suitable for vegans

Vimto squash is no longer suitable for vegans
  • A supplement from animal products has been added to the recipe and the brand has faced backlash from vegans
  • Most vitamin D3 in supplements is produced from lanolin

LONDON: The recipe for fruit juice drink Vimto has been changed to include vitamin D, making it no longer suitable for vegans.
A supplement from animal products has been added to the recipe and the brand has faced backlash from vegans, British newspaper Metro reported.
Most vitamin D3 in supplements is produced from lanolin, which is derived from sheep wool.
A petition has been launched to demand the supplement be removed.
#MakeVimtoVeganAgain is being used by Vimto-loving Twitter users to urge Nichols plc, the company that produces the squash, to revert back to the old recipe.
The change only affects Vimto squash drinks. Other variants, including fizzy and still ready to drink ranges, do not contain any animal products
“All of our Vimto squash drinks are suitable for vegetarians. Due to the recent addition of Vitamin D they are not suitable for vegans,” Vimto said on their website.
“However, all of our other Vimto drinks variants, including fizzy and still ready to drink ranges, do not contain any animal products and as such, are suitable for vegetarians and vegans.”
Vimto is also manufactured under license in Dammam, Saudi Arabia and is an extremely popular drink during the holy month of Ramadan in the Middle East.


Queen Elizabeth marks 95th birthday, days after husband’s funeral

Queen Elizabeth marks 95th birthday, days after husband’s funeral
Updated 21 April 2021

Queen Elizabeth marks 95th birthday, days after husband’s funeral

Queen Elizabeth marks 95th birthday, days after husband’s funeral
  • Prince Philip died on April 9 at the age of 99
  • Elizabeth is the world’s longest-reigning monarch

LONDON: Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, the world’s oldest monarch, turns 95 on Wednesday, but there will be no public celebrations just days after she bade farewell to her husband of seven decades at his funeral.
Prince Philip, whom Elizabeth married in 1947, died on April 9 at the age of 99. The royals paid their final respects to the family’s patriarch at his funeral on Saturday at Windsor Castle.
Because of COVID-19 restrictions, the queen sat alone during the somber service for Philip, who she had described as her “strength and stay.”
Elizabeth, who is also the world’s longest-reigning monarch, will be at the castle for her birthday, which traditionally passes off with little or no ceremony.
However, this year, with the royals marking two weeks of mourning, there will be no gun salutes at the Tower of London or the capital’s Hyde park which usually occur on the queen’s birthday.
“I was at the funeral on Saturday, her Majesty was, as always, more concerned with other people than herself, and she will be on her birthday,” Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, told Reuters.
“She doesn’t do ‘I’m the most important person in the room’. She does ‘I mind about the other people more than about myself’. She is an extraordinary person.”
The queen also has an official birthday, which is usually celebrated with greater pomp on the second Saturday in June.
Philip’s death has robbed Elizabeth of her closest and most trusted confidant, who had been beside her throughout her 69-year reign.
It also came as she grappled with one of the biggest crises to hit the royal family in decades — allegations of racism and neglect against it from her grandson Prince Harry and Meghan, his American wife.
Newspapers have suggested that family members would be visiting the queen over the coming days to ensure she would not be left alone while mourning her late husband.
A Buckingham Palace spokesman declined to comment, saying all family matters after the funeral would be private.
Elizabeth was born on April 21, 1926, in Bruton Street, central London. She ascended to the throne in 1952 at the age of 25, and surpassed her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria as Britain’s longest-reigning monarch in September, 2015.
Elizabeth is also queen of 15 former British colonies including Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
“I would like to send my warm wishes to Her Majesty The Queen on her 95th birthday,” British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Twitter. “I am proud to serve as her prime minister.”