Saudi authority dresses the Kaaba in preparation for 2018 Hajj pilgrimage

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The General Presidency of the Holy Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque prepares the Kaaba for this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. (SPA)
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The General Presidency of the Holy Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque prepares the Kaaba for this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. (SPA)
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The General Presidency of the Holy Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque prepares the Kaaba for this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. (SPA)
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The General Presidency of the Holy Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque prepares the Kaaba for this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. (SPA)
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The General Presidency of the Holy Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque prepares the Kaaba for this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. (SPA)
Updated 31 July 2018

Saudi authority dresses the Kaaba in preparation for 2018 Hajj pilgrimage

JEDDAH: The General Presidency of the Holy Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque lifted the lower part of the Kaaba by three meters on Sunday, and covered the raised part with a piece of white cotton cloth about two meters long from all four sides, in preparation for this year’s Hajj pilgrimage.
The Director General of the King Abdulaziz Complex for the Kaaba Kiswah, Ahmed Al-Mansouri, said the presidency completed the annual custom according to the plans set out for this year’s Hajj season, with the assistance of a team of specialists and technicians.
This procedure is undertaken as a precaution to maintain the cleanliness and safety of the cladding and prevent tampering, as large numbers of pilgrims are keen to touch the dressing on the Kaaba and hold on to its edges, which exposes the garment to damage.
He stressed that some pilgrims’ desire to cut some parts of the Kaaba’s garment or to cover up with clothing is based on mistaken beliefs.
For this reason, the cladding is lifted to a distance of three meters and surrounded by pieces of white cloth, pointing out that the situation will return to normal after the end of the Hajj season.
The Kaaba requires great care and attention throughout the year, which comes as an extension of the care by the guardians of the two holy sites and the Kaaba.
The presidency, represented by the King Abdulaziz Complex for the Kaaba Kiswah, maintains the Kaaba throughout the year, which is an extension of the interest of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques preserve the facilities in general, and the Kaaba in particular.


Diriyah Gate to be a global, historical and cultural landmark

Updated 22 November 2019

Diriyah Gate to be a global, historical and cultural landmark

  • Diriyah is home to Al-Turaif District, built in 1744 and known as one of the largest clay cities in the world

DIRIYAH: With the establishment of the Diriyah Gate Development Authority (DGDA), the historical site of Diriyah will become one of the largest and most important international destinations.

The DGDA seeks to transform the site into a location to host activities and events aimed at exchanging historical and cultural knowledge through museums and venues spread throughout
Al-Turaif District.

 The DGDA aims to celebrate the people of Diriyah by telling their stories and demonstrating their social, cultural and historical the roots, as the cradle of the first Saudi state and a symbol of the beauty of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and
its people.

 Diriyah is home to Al-Turaif District, built in 1744 and known as one of the largest clay cities in the world. It was registered by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site in 2010 — one of five Saudi sites listed.

Not far from Al-Turaif District is the historic Al-Bujairi District, which was a center for spreading science and knowledge during the prosperity of Diriyah, as the capital of the first Saudi state. 

Today it houses many commercial centers and cafes and is the perfect destination to experience Saudi cuisine.

One of the historical landmarks in Al-Turaif District is Salwa Palace, which is located in the northeastern part. It is the largest of its landmarks and spans over 10,000 square meters. It was founded by Imam Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed bin Saud in 1765, and is historically known as the home of the first royal family. 

The palace houses the Diriyah Museum, which presents the history and development of the first Saudi state through works of art, drawings, models and documentaries.

BACKGROUND

At the northern end of old Diriyah, the town of Ghusaybah sits atop of a plateau surrounded by the Hanifa Valley on three sides.

Salwa Palace forms an integrated architectural system with its residential, administrative, cultural and religious units.

 Al-Turaif District also includes the Imam Muhammad bin Saud Mosque, known as the Great Mosque or Al-Turaif Mosque. It is adjacent to Salwa Palace on the north side, and Imams used to lead Friday prayers there.

 To make movement between the mosque and the palace easier, Imam Saud bin Abdul Aziz built a bridge to connect them on the upper floor. The mosque houses a religious school to teach religious sciences. It was formerly the largest mosque in the Arabian Peninsula and was built to symbolize the strength and unity of the Saudi state.

 At the northern end of old Diriyah, the town of Ghusaybah sits atop of a plateau surrounded by the Hanifa Valley on three sides. It was settled by Mani’ Al-Muraydi, the oldest ancestor of the House of Saud, in the 15th century. 

Ghusaybah is a well-established location, carefully chosen for the establishment of the new governorate, and its location played a major role in the protection of Hajj convoys and trade passing through its areas of influence in Al-Arid region.

 Ghusaybah was the seat of an independent governorate before the founding of the first Saudi state. It provided protection for the northern gate of Diriyah during the campaign of Ibrahim Pasha in 1818.

 Samhan is one of the historical areas south of Ghusaybeh on a triangle overlooking the valley when it meets another tributary, the villages of Omran. It directly overlooks the districts of Qusayrin, Mrayih, and Al-Turaif. This location was important during the reign of Imam Mohammed bin Saud and his son Samhan, being a well-fortified site during the siege of Diriyah. It was selected by Imam Abdullah to be his defense headquarters.

 In the field of philanthropy, one may mention “Sabala Moudhi” which was founded by Imam Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed bin Saud, who made it a charitable endowment in the name of his mother, Moudhi bint Sultan bin Abi Wahtan, wife of Imam Mohammed bin Saud. 

It is located east of the Salwa Palace on the southeast of Al-Turaif District. It is a two-story building and was established to provide free accommodation for visitors coming to the city of Diriyah.