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)
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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-backed electric car breaks through 500 miles range barrier

Updated 12 August 2020

Saudi-backed electric car breaks through 500 miles range barrier

  • Lucid Motors announced independent range verification of 517 miles on a single charge for its forthcoming Lucid Air all-electric sedan

 

LONDON:A Saudi-backed electric vehicle has broken through the 500 mile range barrier from a single charge.
Lucid Motors, in which Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund is a major investor, on Wednesday announced independent range verification of 517 miles on a single charge for its forthcoming Lucid Air all-electric sedan.
The results confirm that the Lucid Air is the longest range electric vehicle to date, the car maker said in a statement.
So-called “range anxiety,” where drivers fear being stranded without power in their cars, is a major factor for electric vehicle manufacturers in convincing people to make the switch from traditional gasoline-fueled vehicles.
“Range and efficiency are widely recognized as the most relevant proof points by which EV technical prowess is measured,” said Lucid Motors CEO Peter Rawlinson. “A few years ago we revealed our alpha prototypes of the Lucid Air and promised over 400 miles range; a reflection of our technology at that time. In the intervening period we have achieved a series of technological breakthroughs, culminating in an unsurpassed degree of energy efficiency.”
The PIF agreed a $1 billion investment deal with Lucid Motors two years ago to develop the car at a factory in Arizona.
The production version of the Lucid Air will debut in an online event on Sept. 9, 2020. In addition to the vehicle’s final interior and exterior designs, new details about production specifications, available configurations, and pricing information will also be shared.
Customer deliveries of the Lucid Air, which will be produced at Lucid’s new factory in Casa Grande, Arizona, will begin in early 2021.