Saudi-based interfaith center calls for concerted efforts to check intolerance

Faisal bin Abdulrahman bin Muammar.(SPA)
Updated 19 March 2019

Saudi-based interfaith center calls for concerted efforts to check intolerance

  • Faisal bin Abdulrahman bin Muammar said this phenomenon will only disappear through the concerted efforts of individuals and organizations to promote dialogue and tolerance

RIYADH: The world is headed for more extreme forms of terrorism, in the wake of the attacks against Muslim worshippers in New Zealand, and against Jews in Pittsburgh in the US, said the secretary-general of the King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz International Center for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue (KAICIID).
This type of terrorism is supported by some elected figures from hard-line political parties who support and market extremism through their official channels, taking advantage of the freedoms that govern Western countries, said Faisal bin Abdulrahman bin Muammar.
KAICIID presents religion as part of the solution, not the source of the problem, he added. In the West, separation of religion and state, and rejection of religion as part of the solution, have “resulted in failed treatments no less dangerous than the failure of military attempts to combat terrorism,” he said.
“Throughout these attempts and initiatives, which have been accompanied by an escalation of media and political extremist campaigns against Islam and Muslims, as well as other religious and ethnic minorities, Western societies have witnessed growth in populist movements and a rise in the popularity of extreme right-wing parties, which found in the hatred of Islam, Muslims and immigrants fertile ground to gain popular support and realize political interests.”
What happened in New Zealand reflects the emergence of a wider phenomenon that KAICIID has long warned against, bin Muammar said.
He said this phenomenon will only disappear through the concerted efforts of individuals and organizations to promote dialogue and tolerance. In addition to that, he added, there is a need enact laws to criminalize actions against Muslims and followers of other religions similar to the laws formed to check anti-Semitism.


Cinema investment in Saudi Arabia set to hit SR5bn in 2020

Updated 28 January 2020

Cinema investment in Saudi Arabia set to hit SR5bn in 2020

  • Saudi conference study reveals 140 cinemas planned for Kingdom creating estimated 5,300 jobs
  • One of the main goals of the Vision 2030 reform plan was to increase household spending on domestic entertainment from 2.9 percent to 6 percent of total expenditure

RIYADH: Investment in building new cinemas in Saudi Arabia was expected to top SR5 billion ($1.33 billion) during 2020, according to latest figures.

Data published ahead of the Cinema Build KSA 2020 conference, taking place at the Fairmont hotel in Riyadh on Feb. 19 to 20, revealed that 140 movie theaters were planned to open in 30 malls throughout the Kingdom, creating more than 5,300 job opportunities.

The Saudi cinema industry would see enormous growth and was set to become the leader in the region having already gained attention from stakeholders around the globe, research from conference partner Great Minds Group predicted.

With a total of 1,323 screens planned for the country, demand for materials and resources to build cinemas has increased dramatically.

The Cinema Build KSA report revealed that an estimated 158,760 cinema seats and more than 5,953,500 square feet of carpet would be required to realize this year’s growth plans, in addition to more than 18,852,750 square feet of gypsum boards, wall panels, and specialist ceiling materials and 1,250 air-handling units.

One of the main goals of the Vision 2030 reform plan was to increase household spending on domestic entertainment from 2.9 percent to 6 percent of total expenditure, considering that Saudi nationals spent about $30 billion annually on tourism and entertainment outside the Kingdom.

Supporting and enhancing the fast-growing cinema sector would not only recover Saudi investments abroad but would also create more than 5,314 job opportunities in 2020 in the Saudi market, according to the Cinema Build KSA report.

The Saudi cinema industry was predicted to see enormous growth and being the largest gathering of cinema stakeholders in the Kingdom, Cinema Build KSA 2020 aims to serve as a learning center for building world-class film theaters.

The event is organized by Eyes of Cities in association with the Great Minds Group. Boasting more than 300 attendees, at least 30 sponsors and exhibitors, and 25 international speakers, the second annual conference will cover a broader aspect of the burgeoning cinema industry in the Kingdom.