Mabrook! Embassies welcome princess to ambassadors’ club

Princess Reema's appointment as the first Saudi woman ambassador was welcome news in diplomatic circles in the Kingdom. (AN photo by Ziyad Al-Arfaj)
Updated 26 February 2019

Mabrook! Embassies welcome princess to ambassadors’ club

  • Top diplomats in the Kingdom welcomed the news of Princess Reema's appointment as Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the US

RIYADH: The appointment of Princess Reema bint Bandar as Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the US has been welcomed by foreign diplomatic missions in the Kingdom.

Princess Reema made history last Saturday when she was appointed to the role, becoming the first Saudi woman to be named ambassador.

Top diplomats in the Kingdom welcomed the news.

Dominique Mineur, Belgium’s ambassador in Saudi Arabia, said the appointment would be a stepping stone for more prominent female roles in line with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 reform plan.

“This is in line with Vision 2030, to give a more prominent role for women in Saudi society,” she told Arab News. “Of course, she’s an inspiring figure and has been supporting women in so many fields, such as sports, health, work and financial independence. It’s a logical appointment considering the role she has played. This will undoubtedly be a strong support for all women of all origins and backgrounds to become leaders in their own expertise. I can only hope that there will more who will take such prominent roles.”

The princess was vice president of women’s affairs at the General Sports Authority (GSA), a position she held since 2016. She was also named president of the Saudi Federation for Community Sports in 2017, and appointed to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in August 2018.

Simon Collis, the British ambassador to Saudi Arabia, recalled working closely with her on projects.

“I and many colleagues in the UK have enjoyed working with HRH Princess Reema bint Bandar in her current role, in which she has driven access to sports for women in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and we look forward to continuing this relationship in future,” he told Arab News. “I wish her every success.”

Ridwaan Jadwat, Australia’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia, wished the princess a happy and successful posting. “Mabruk/congratulations to HRH Princess Reema bint Bandar bin Sultan on her appointment as Saudi Arabia’s first female ambassador. It is an important milestone,” he told Arab News.

Princess Reema’s father was a former ambassador to the US, and she spent several years there when she was young. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in museum studies from George Washington University, and is a philanthropist and entrepreneur.

She has spoken about the inclusion of women in the Saudi workforce, describing reforms as “evolution, not Westernization,” and about the Kingdom’s efforts to tackle bigger issues than women being allowed to drive or attend football games, calling them “quick wins.” 

Problems such as domestic violence demanded greater scrutiny, she told the Atlantic Council in Washington.


Saudi Arabia, Russia sign agreements during Vladimir Putin visit to Riyadh

Updated 14 October 2019

Saudi Arabia, Russia sign agreements during Vladimir Putin visit to Riyadh

  • King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman welcome Russian leader at Al-Yamamah Palace
  • 20 deals of cooperation were signed between the two countries

DUBAI: Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in Riyadh on Monday on his first visit since 2007, and was welcomed to Al-Yamamah Palace by Saudi King Salman as well as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Riyadh Governor Prince Faisal bin Bandar earlier personally welcomed the Russian leader as he disembarked from his aircraft at King Khalid International Airport.

An official welcoming ceremony was held in honor of Putin and various agreements were signed between the governments of Saudi Arabia and Russia including an oil cooperation pact.

------

READ MORE: Dedicated Arab News ‘Putin in Saudi Arabia’ spotlight

------

Some 20 agreements were signed between the two countries, in a ceremony overseen by the king, crown prince, Putin and Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov.

Russian sovereign wealth fund RDIF and Saudi Arabia's SALIC signed an agreement to team up in searching for investment projects in the Russian agricultural sector, RDIF said in a statement on Monday.

A string of multi-million-dollar investment contracts were also signed in the aerospace, culture, health and advanced technology sectors.

Putin’s “long-awaited” visit will include discussions on “further cooperation to stabilize prices on the world carbohydrate market” as well as the situation in Syria, the Gulf and Yemen.

The Russian leader, in an interview with Arab broadcasters and aired on Sunday ahead of his arrival, described the “very good relations” with the Saudi leadership.

“We consider Saudi Arabia a friendly nation. I have very good relations with both the King and the Crown Prince,” Putin said, and noted the improved bilateral relations between both countries.

------

PHOTO GALLERY: Vladimir Putin visits Saudi Arabia

------

Putin in the interview likewise condemned the Sept. 14 attacks on Aramco facilities, and said “such actions do not bring any positive results to anybody, including perpetrators,” as they do not have a strong effect on the market.

“We condemn any such actions, end of story. This is the official position … regardless of who stood behind the incident,” the Russian president commented.

A forum attended by Saudi Arabian and Russian business leaders and government officials earlier Monday resulted in the signing of several agreements between companies of both countries.

(Developing)