Saudi Arabia ‘not consulted’ over Soleimani drone strike

The drone strike near Baghdad airport killed Iranian Al-Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani. (IRAQI MILITARY / AFP)
Short Url
Updated 05 January 2020

Saudi Arabia ‘not consulted’ over Soleimani drone strike

  • Kingdom stresses importance of exercising restraint to guard against an escalation
  • Prince Khalid bin Salman, the deputy defence minister, to travel to Washington and London

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia was not consulted by Washington over the US drone strike that killed Qassem Soleimani, an official from the Kingdom told AFP Sunday.

“The kingdom of Saudi Arabia was not consulted regarding the US strike,” the official said, requesting anonymity.

“In light of the rapid developments, the kingdom stresses the importance of exercising restraint to guard against all acts that may lead to escalation, with severe consequences.”

Saudi Arabia's foreign ministry made a similar call for restraint at the weekend and King Salman emphasised the need for measures to defuse tensions in a phone call on Saturday with Iraqi President Barham Saleh.

In a separate phone call with Iraq's Prime Minister Adel Abdel Mahdi, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman stressed "the need to make efforts to calm the situation and de-escalate tensions,” the official Saudi Press Agency reported.

The crown prince has instructed Prince Khalid bin Salman, the deputy defence minister, to travel to Washington and London in the next few days to urge restraint, the Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper reported.

*With AFP


Saudi minister calls on worshippers to respect safety measures in mosques

Updated 28 May 2020

Saudi minister calls on worshippers to respect safety measures in mosques

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia's minister of Islamic affairs called on Muslims to respect ongoing preventative measures to stop the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) inside mosques as the Kingdom eases some restrictions.

Sheikh Abdullatif Al-Asheikh said worshipers should bring their own prayer mats, wear masks and wash their hands prior to coming to the mosque to ensure the safety of other worshippers. 

Al-Asheikh said preventative measures will remain in place to ensure a safe return of worshipers to mosques for Friday prayers from May 31 until June 20, except in Makkah. 

Worshippers must keep two meters apart and leave a row of space empty between each row, he said.

The minister said the elderly and children under 15 should continue to avoid going to the mosque. 

The instructions follow other announcements in the Kingdom relaxing aspects of the lockdown, including reducing curfews and allowing freer movement of people.