Saudi Heritage Preservation Society wins UN role

Saudi Heritage Preservation Society wins UN role
The Saudi Heritage Preservation Society has become the first Gulf organization to act as a global consultant with UNESCO. (AN file photo)
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Updated 16 December 2019

Saudi Heritage Preservation Society wins UN role

Saudi Heritage Preservation Society wins UN role
  • Its mission includes monitoring and encouraging public and private initiatives related to the preservation of Saudi heritage

RIYADH: The Saudi Heritage Preservation Society has become the first Gulf organization to act as a global consultant with the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The move follows a recommendation by UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage Committee at a forum in Bogota, Colombia, and caps several international achievements by the society.

In recent years the society had widened its role in preserving Saudi heritage, as well as raising awareness of its importance and national value.

In 2013, the society launched several projects emphasizing protecting and documenting archaeological sites and old buildings. Moreover, the projects involve initiatives toward sculptures and skills associated with traditional arts and crafts through launching awareness campaigns and seasonal competitions.

Its mission includes monitoring and encouraging public and private initiatives related to the preservation of Saudi heritage, identifying undeveloped and overlooked areas of Saudi cultural legacy, and promoting public awareness about the importance of Saudi cultural heritage for present and future generations.


Saudi crown prince inaugurates $1bn housing and medical projects for Ministry of Defense employees

The initiative is part of new development projects implemented and recently completed by the ministry at a cost of more than $1.066 billion. (SPA)
The initiative is part of new development projects implemented and recently completed by the ministry at a cost of more than $1.066 billion. (SPA)
Updated 20 June 2021

Saudi crown prince inaugurates $1bn housing and medical projects for Ministry of Defense employees

The initiative is part of new development projects implemented and recently completed by the ministry at a cost of more than $1.066 billion. (SPA)
  • The initiative includes six housing projects that provide 3,797 housing units,
  • The projects aim to achieve the strategic objectives of the Ministry of Defense’s development program, in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman inaugurated eight housing projects as well as medical treatment for employees of the Ministry of Defense, the state news agency SPA reported on Sunday.
The initiative is part of new development projects implemented and recently completed by the ministry at a cost of more than SR4 billion ($1.066 billion).
The initiative includes six housing projects that provide 3,797 housing units, comprising of the King Saud Base housing project in Hafr Al-Batin, the armed forces housing project in the northwestern region, the housing project for the families of the King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Center for Mountain Warfare in Taif, and the armed forces housing project in Sharurah, in addition to the first phase of the armed forces housing project in Jazan and the second phase of the armed forces housing project in the Eastern Province.
The crown prince also inaugurated a number of medical development projects, including one to establish a heart center in the Armed Forces Hospital in the northwest with a capacity of 130 beds, and the expansion of the Prince Sultan Armed Forces Hospital in Madinah, which will increase bed capacity to 100 beds. The expansion will also add 10 intensive care units, operating rooms equipped with the latest medical equipment, and emergency, radiology, laboratory and pharmacy departments, as well as a blood bank.
Dr. Khaled bin Hussein Al-Biyari, assistant minister of defense for executive affairs, said that completion and inauguration of these projects was an implementation of the prince’s directives, and was within the framework of his concern for the armed forces and for providing adequate housing and integrated health care for its employees.
Al-Biyari said that these projects were part of a series of programs to secure housing units for employees of the armed forces according to the best standards, design specifications and implementation.
The aim is to develop and expand existing health facilities and support them with the latest medical and technical equipment to achieve the strategic objectives of the Ministry of Defense’s development program, in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.


Saudi Arabia’s King Salman receives written message from the Philippine’s Duterte

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman receives written message from the Philippine’s Duterte
Updated 20 June 2021

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman receives written message from the Philippine’s Duterte

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman receives written message from the Philippine’s Duterte
  • The letter dealt with bilateral relations and ways to strengthen them in all fields

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s King Salman received a written letter from Rodrigo Duterte, president of the Philippines, the Kingdom’s foreign ministry said on Sunday.
The letter dealt with relations between Riyadh and Manila and ways to support and enhance them in various fields, the ministry added.
The message was received on behalf of Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan by Deputy Foreign Minister Waleed Al-Khuraiji, during his meeting with Chief of Presidential Protocol and Presidential Assistant on Foreign Affairs of the Philippines Robert Eric Borje, and his accompanying delegation, in the capital, Riyadh.
During the meeting, they discussed ways to strengthen bilateral relations and exchanged views on regional and international issues of common interest.


Soul sisters: Meet the Saudi women blazing a musical trail

Soul sisters: Meet the Saudi women blazing a musical trail
Former reporter and jazz and blues singer, Loulwa Al-Sharif has been singing for seven years. The larger-than-life singer has been the talk of the town for years, delivering high and low notes with passion. (Supplied)
Updated 20 June 2021

Soul sisters: Meet the Saudi women blazing a musical trail

Soul sisters: Meet the Saudi women blazing a musical trail
  • Social reforms open doors for female musicians in traditional male field

JEDDAH: Saudi female musicians and performers are hitting the high notes and creating crowd-pleasing beats for Saudi fans.

Jazz and blues, rock, rap and many other genres have been explored by Saudis, but now more Saudi women are making their way to the performance stage, thanks to social reforms that mean career choices that once were taboo are now supported by many.
Saudi electronic music producer and DJ Nouf Sufyani, known as Cosmicat, told Arab News that has been obsessed with music since childhood.
“My love for music was overwhelming and kept leading me back until I started making my own,” the 27-year-old said.
In 2017, Sufyani began gaining attention in the male-dominated field because of her unique style.
She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in dental medicine and surgery, and worked as a dentist for a while before pursuing her music career.
“It’s a struggle proving myself in a male-dominated industry, and there is also the fear of being a social outcast for what I do since it’s not a traditional job and the style of music I play is not really mainstream,” said Sufyani.
Music is “the motivation that keeps me going every day — it’s a form of art that I keep rediscovering over and over.”
Sufyani taught herself to DJ. “I do electronic music, I love to use my voice and some Arabic poetry or spoken word or even a capella. I make music that can be enjoyed on the dance floor; my flavor is more underground and very personal.”

Saudi electronic music producer and DJ Nouf Sufyani, known as Cosmicat, told Arab News that has been obsessed with music since childhood.

Her music is available on major platforms such as Apple Music, Spotify, Anghami, Deezer and Soundcloud, and is also played on the flight entertainment system of Saudi Airlines.
Lamya Nasser, a 33-year-old facility and travel management officer, developed an interest in rock and metal at the age of nine, and began recording her music in 2008, long before the social reforms, as part of the first Saudi female rock band the Accolade.
“What got me started is my love and passion for rock music, how much I can relate to a lot of its messages and how it shaped my character along the way,” she told Arab News.

HIGHLIGHT

Jazz and blues, rock, rap and many other genres have been explored by Saudis, but now more Saudi women are making their way to the performance stage, thanks to social reforms that mean career choices that once were taboo are now supported by many.

“I started my journey with the Accolade back when I was 21 and a student at King Abdul Aziz University. I got to know a very talented guitar player named Dina and along with her sister we formed the band.”
In that year, the band visited Khaled Abdulmanan, a music producer in Jeddah at Red Sand Production. They have recorded three songs: “Pinocchio” (2008), “Destiny” (2009) and her favorite, “This is not me” (2010).
After the women graduated, they went their separate ways. “Sadly, we weren’t able to gather for rehearsals like we used to, and each one of us started her own career.”
In 2018, Nasser went solo and continues to share her performances on Instagram @Lamya.K.Nasser. She recently joined a new recording studio under the name of Wall of Sound.

Lamya Nasser, a 33-year-old facility and travel management officer, developed an interest in rock and metal at the age of nine, and began recording her music in 2008.

“Music can be the fuel to our soul and regenerate our energy. We can translate our pain and express ourselves through music,” she said.
Nasser said that the song “Pinocchio” had more than 19,000 listens on Soundcloud. “It made me truly happy and proud. Even now I still messages on my Instagram account from time to time from beautiful souls sharing their admiration for Accolade’s music,” she said.
Former reporter and jazz and blues singer, 33-year-old Loulwa Al-Sharif (@loulwa_music) has been singing for seven years. The larger-than-life singer has been the talk of the town for years, delivering high and low notes with passion.

Music is the motivation that keeps me going every day — it’s a form of art that I keep rediscovering over and over.
Cosmicat

“I tried working in different fields since I was 17, and decided to leave journalism three years ago to work on what I’m passionate about,” Al-Sharif told Arab News.
“I was one of very few women performing six years ago. It was a little difficult. There were talented females, but no one was singing live in front of an audience. I was maybe the first or second,” she said. “It was hard, but a lot of people were supporting me.” She described music as raw emotion.
“Blues is real emotion and jazz is unpredictable, I love how unpredictable it is from the sound of the piano — there are no rules, and the lyrics from blues music are so real.” Al-Sharif hopes to educate the new generation on jazz and blues through her performances.
“I chose to sing it back then because not many from the new generation listen to jazz and blues, so I really wanted to bring it back and for people to enjoy it.”


Saudi Arabia reassures priority groups on COVID-19 vaccines

Saudi Arabia reassures priority groups on COVID-19 vaccines
Saudi Arabia reassures priority groups on COVID-19 vaccines. (REUTERS)
Updated 20 June 2021

Saudi Arabia reassures priority groups on COVID-19 vaccines

Saudi Arabia reassures priority groups on COVID-19 vaccines
  • Saudi health ministry reassured those over 60 and priority groups that they will continue to receive the second vaccine doses

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health said that second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will be rescheduled for the general public according to the availability of supplies.

The MOH reassured those over 60 and priority groups that they will continue to receive the second vaccine doses.

On Saturday, the MOH announced 1,153 new cases of COVID-19, raising the total number of cases to 473,112, and 1,145 recoveries, bringing the total to 454,404. The death tally is now 7,663, with 13 new COVID-19 associated deaths reported in the past 24 hours.

The Kingdom’s recovery rate is holding steady at 96 percent.

Makkah reported 335 cases, Riyadh 266, the Eastern Province 148 and Asir 119. Jouf reported only 4 cases.

The number of active cases continues to rise despite the high recovery rate, and stands at 11,045. No new cases were admitted to intensive care, which leaves 1,496 still in critical care.

77,831 new PCR tests have been conducted in the past 24 hours and more than 16.5 million doses of the vaccine administered so far.


Endangered goat species released in Saudi Arabia’s Baljurashi park

Endangered goat species released in Saudi Arabia’s Baljurashi park
Endangered goat species released in Saudi Arabia’s National Park of Baljurashi. (SPA)
Updated 20 June 2021

Endangered goat species released in Saudi Arabia’s Baljurashi park

Endangered goat species released in Saudi Arabia’s Baljurashi park
  • The park is one of the largest in Saudi Arabia and features rugged mountain terrain, which serves as an ideal habitat for the goat species

BAHA: Twenty endangered mountain goats have been released back into the wild in Saudi Arabia’s National Park of Baljurashi, the first rehabilitation project of its kind in Baha.

It comes as part of efforts by The National Center for Wildlife Development to protect the Kingdom’s endangered animal species.

At a ceremony held for the release, Baha Gov. Prince Hussam bin Saud bin Abdul Aziz stressed the importance of preserving and restoring wildlife in the region to protect the environment and nature, adding that the efforts were part of the center’s coordination with a branch of the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture and the National Center for the Development of Vegetation Cover and Combating Desertification, and were in line with Vision 2030.

He also stressed the importance of achieving ecological balance and praised the efforts of the ministry in achieving sustainable development and enriching biodiversity in the Kingdom.

The park is one of the largest in the Kingdom and features rugged mountain terrain, which serves as an ideal habitat for the goat species.

The release is part of the Saudi repatriation program carried out by the National Center for Wildlife Development to restore endangered species in their natural habitats, make the park more attractive for visitors, activate societal partnerships and restore the balance of natural environments.

Tourists and visitors in Baha will be able to safely watch the rare animals from afar and capture photos.

The release event was attended by undersecretary of the region’s principality, Abdul Moneim bin Yassin Al​-Shehri; CEO of the National Center for Wildlife Development, Dr. Mohammed Qurban; and director of the ministry’s branch in the region, Fahd Al-Zahrani.