Saudi Arabia’s King Salman arrives in the Eastern Province of the Kingdom

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Updated 14 April 2018

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman arrives in the Eastern Province of the Kingdom

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman received princes, officials, scholars and a group of citizens at the Al-Khaleej Palace in Alkhobar on Thursday, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The audience was attended by Prince Khalid bin Fahd bin Khalid, Prince Mansour bin Saud bin Abdul Aziz, Prince Talal bin Saud bin Abdul Aziz and a number of other princes.

Saudi Arabia is preparing to host the 29th Arab League summit on Sunday in the Eastern Province. 

The Center for Government Communication at the Ministry of Culture and Information and the Communication and Media Center at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs have launched the official social media accounts of the summit on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube (@Arabsummit2018).

The social media accounts will be run around the clock during the summit and its preparatory meetings.

Mahmoud Afifi, spokesman of the secretary-general of the Arab League and Minister Plenipotentiary, said that the convening of the summit in Saudi Arabia would give strong momentum to tackle issues and crises in the region, and contribute to the success of the summit. 

Afifi said that the launch of Iranian-made ballistic missiles by Houthi militias in Saudi cities and the Iranian interference in the internal affairs of Arab countries would receive special attention during the summit.


Saudi tourism megaproject aims to turn the Red Sea green

Updated 20 min 57 sec ago

Saudi tourism megaproject aims to turn the Red Sea green

  • Development will protect endangered hawksbill turtle, while coral research could help save the Great Barrier Reef

RIYADH: Key ecological targets are driving Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea tourism megaproject, its leader has told Arab News.

The development will not only protect the habitat of the endangered hawksbill turtle, but could also save coral reefs that are dying elsewhere in the world, said Red Sea Development Company Chief Executive John Pagano.

The project is taking shape in a 28,000 square kilometer region of lagoons, archipelagos, canyons and volcanic geology between the small towns of Al-Wajh and Umluj on the Kingdom’s west coast.

One island, Al-Waqqadi, looked like the perfect tourism destination, but was discovered to be a breeding ground for the hawksbill. “In the end, we said we’re not going to develop it. It shows you can balance development and conservation,” Pagano said.

Scientists are also working to explain why the area’s coral reef system — fourth-largest in the world —  is thriving when others around the world are endangered.

“To the extent we solve that mystery, the ambition would be to export that to the rest of the world,” Pagano said. “Can we help save the Great Barrier Reef or the Caribbean coral that has been severely damaged?”

 

ALSO READ: INTERVIEW: Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea project to set ‘new global standards in sustainability’, says CEO