Riyadh celebrates Eid with traditional fervor

Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar meets Saudi children participating in Eid Al-Fitr activities. (SPA)
Updated 06 June 2019

Riyadh celebrates Eid with traditional fervor

  • Civil Defense warns of dangers posed by firecrackers

RIYADH: Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar sponsored the official city’s Eid celebration, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

He was received by the CEO of the Arriyadh Development Authority Tarek Al-Faris, senior officials from the authority and community members.

Prince Faisal toured the sights, taking in performances and displays that captured the Eid spirit of the past, before going to Al-Thumairi Avenue where he was briefed on the events, the carnival atmosphere, special celebrations and live shows.

He and his entourage watched a 3D-presentation on the walls of Masmak Palace which told the story about the restoration of Riyadh by King Abdul Aziz. 

The prince congratulated members of a charitable organization for their work with orphans, and thanked family members of armed forces personnel who had died in the line of duty. 

At the end of the tour, he took part in the traditional Saudi Ardeh dance at Masmak Square which was presented by the Ad Diriyah Folk Art Group.

The General Entertainment Authority (GEA) is offering more than 80 different events for residents and visitors to enjoy during the Eid Season festival, which runs for five days across the country.


Firecracker dangers

Saudi Arabia’s General Directorate of Civil Defense has urged children and youths to refrain from using fireworks and firecrackers during the Eid Al-Fitr celebrations.

The warning advised that potentially hazardous fireworks are risky for youngsters and can cause serious injuries or fires.

Col. Abdullah Al-Harthi, Saudi Civil Defense spokesman, said the use of explosive fireworks by children or young people causes serious injuries such as the amputation of fingers, eye tissue laceration due to shrapnel, as well body burns.

The firecrackers may also cause the ignition of fires in public places, houses or rest houses, Al-Harthi said.

He added that parents should monitor their children and prevent them from using fireworks, especially as many firecrackers lack basic security and safety components due to their low quality.

Al-Harthi called on parties concerned with market surveillance to counter attempts to sell these dangerous explosive items.

Saudi Arabia's envoy to UK: We won’t allow Iran to meddle in region 

Updated 25 January 2020

Saudi Arabia's envoy to UK: We won’t allow Iran to meddle in region 

  • “You cannot give in to a country like Iran because they will see it as a sign of weakness,” Prince Khalid said
  • The ambassador encouraged people to visit his country before forming an opinion of it

LONDON: Riyadh does not seek conflict with Tehran but will not let “Iran’s meddling in the region” go unchecked, said the Saudi ambassador to Britain. 
“We do not seek conflict. We do not seek escalation. We have always been supporters of taking a firm stand against Iran. Our issue is not with the people of Iran, it is with the regime running the country,” Prince Khalid bin Bandar bin Sultan told the Daily Telegraph. 
“But we do not believe in appeasement. At no point in history has appeasement proved to be a successful strategy. You cannot give in to a country like Iran because they will see it as a sign of weakness.”
France, Germany and the UK, three of the signatories to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), triggered a “dispute resolution mechanism” recently in response to Iran ramping up its nuclear program in violation of the deal.
Prince Khalid criticized the JCPOA because it does not address “all the other things that Iran” is doing in the region.
“Iran’s meddling in the region is as challenging as the nuclear program. This is why we were concerned with the nuclear deal,” he said.
The ambassador also touched on recent allegations that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was involved in hacking the phone of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
“It is very easy for people to throw these unsubstantiated allegations against Saudi Arabia because they know that it is very difficult for Riyadh to defend itself when it does not have proper access to the details,” Prince Khalid said.
“We need to see the evidence before we make any response, because the evidence made public so far is circumstantial at best.”
Saudis do not always represent themselves well because they are “a reticent people and our culture does not push us to talking about ourselves,” he said. “We need to do a better job on showing the world who we really are.” 
The ambassador, who was appointed last year, encouraged people to visit his country before forming an opinion of it. 
“There are a lot of misconceptions about Saudi Arabia. We want people to come and see Saudi Arabia for themselves, and not rely on what they have read somewhere or heard somewhere to form their opinion of the country,” he said.
“There is plenty to see, and you will find a warm, generous and hospitable people there waiting to greet you.”