New Saudi security force to fight drug and weapons smuggling across mountainous southern border

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Members of the Saudi Arabia's elite Al-Afwaj Regiment. (SPA)
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Members of the Saudi Arabia's elite Al-Afwaj Regiment. (SPA)
Updated 05 May 2019

New Saudi security force to fight drug and weapons smuggling across mountainous southern border

  • The Al-Afwaj Regiment is tasked to interdict drug and weapons smuggling across the Kingdom's mountainous southern border
  • The mountain force is a new unit under the Ministry of Interior

NAJRAN: Saudi Arabia has deployed a newly created force to combat weapons and drug smuggling by infiltrators across the Kingdom’s mountainous southern border. 

The Al-Afwaj Regiment, a new unit under the Ministry of Interior, will act as the primary support force for the Saudi Border Patrol in the regions of Najran, Jazan and Asir, across the border with Yemen.

The regiment was created under the orders of the Minister of Interior, Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz, and is specifically trained in carrying out security tasks in mountainous areas that include deep valleys and extremely rough terrain.

General Fahad Saeed Al-Qahtani, Under Minister in-charge of the Al Afwaj Force, told Arab News that the regiment is ready and capable of handling any situation they encounter.

“We are prepared to deal with all eventualities with high levels of professionalism,” Al-Qahtani said after reviewing the readiness of the regiment.

"The regiment will combat drug and weapons smugglers and will stop infiltrators from coming into Saudi Arabia," he said.

“We did not begin (our patrols) until all security personnel and officers were trained and fully qualified in patrolling the mountain areas with difficult terrain, which requires that they be skilled in the use of nature and the landscape and also be skilled in the process of surveying and monitoring and tracking violators in order that mountain gaps, valleys, the brush and grasslands not be utilized by them,” he said.
 


Saudi passport directorate expands e-services through Absher

Saudi passport office said that the services will promote e-transactions and make it easier for people to get in touch with officials. (SPA)
Updated 01 April 2020

Saudi passport directorate expands e-services through Absher

  • Saudi Arabia’s information and communications technology sector makes up 4 percent of the Saudi gross domestic product

RIYADH: The Saudi General Directorate of Passports is offering a “messages and applications” service to people through the Absher online platform.
Beneficiaries can use the service by logging into their account on Absher, choosing the “My Services” option, general services, messages and applications, then clicking on the “General Directorate of Passports” link and selecting the required service from a list including “identification of residents, visas, transfer of information, transfer of information and change of profession, suggestions.” After writing their message, they simply click the “send” button.
The passport office said that the services will promote e-transactions and make it easier for people to get in touch with officials at the directorate to discuss their problems.
The Kingdom’s information and communications technology (ICT) sector makes up 4 percent of the Saudi gross domestic product.
The sector has experienced significant regulatory change, expressed across several public- and private-sector investment drives since the launch of Vision 2030.
Saudi Arabia is also the region’s largest ICT market, ranking 13th globally, with a value of $28.7 billion (SR107 billion) in 2019 and strong growth in both the consumer and enterprise segments.