Beijing envoy welcomes Saudi Arabia’s help in virus fight

Chen Weiqing, the Chinese ambassador to Saudi Arabia. (Photo/Twitter)
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Updated 05 February 2020

Beijing envoy welcomes Saudi Arabia’s help in virus fight

  • Saudi Arabia flew 10 students from Wuhan, the center of the epidemic, back to Riyadh, with China “providing full support and facilitation”

RIYADH: China has praised Saudi Arabia for its help in dealing with the coronavirus outbreak, saying the Kingdom had offered “great moral and material support” in the wake of the health crisis.
“Since the outbreak of the epidemic, Saudi Arabia has been of great support to China,” Chen Weiqing, the Chinese ambassador to the Kingdom, told Arab News.
A Cabinet meeting last week chaired by King Salman expressed the Kingdom’s concern for China’s welfare, while Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan phoned his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi to reiterate the Kingdom’s support.
“I extend my appreciation and gratitude to King Salman, and the Saudi government and people,” the envoy said.
The Chinese ambassador said many countries, including Egypt, “offered us moral and material support to contain the coronavirus epidemic, and we are grateful for all forms of valuable support.”

Since the outbreak of the epidemic, Saudi Arabia has been of great support to China.

Chen Weiqing Chinese ambassador

Saudi Arabia flew 10 students from Wuhan, the center of the epidemic, back to Riyadh, with China “providing full support and facilitation,” according to the envoy.
“For those who decide to stay in China, we will spare no effort to safeguard the life and health of foreign nationals, including our Saudi friends, and take effective measures to address their concerns and needs in a timely manner,” Chen said.
“China has the confidence and ability to control the epidemic in the near future, with lower costs. We welcome our Saudi friends to China for education, business and tourism after the virus is contained. The outlook for the Chinese economy remains steady and positive, and China-Saudi cooperation will not to be affected in the long term.”
Preliminary tests on the 10 Saudi students showed no signs of viral infection.
The envoy said he planned to invite the students to the Chinese Embassy after their two-week quarantine was complete.


Marwan Al-Sulaimani, director general at the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah in Jeddah

Updated 29 min 10 sec ago

Marwan Al-Sulaimani, director general at the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah in Jeddah

Marwan Al-Sulaimani has been the director general at the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah in Jeddah since April 2017.

The Saudi Smart Cities Summit and Expo was launched in Jeddah on Wednesday. Al-Sulaimani said that smart technology is being adopted to help pilgrims at all stages of their religious journey in Saudi Arabia.

“Technological advances will smooth pilgrims’ progress from the moment they arrive in the Kingdom until they gather at Mount Arafat,” he said.

The two-day summit highlighted the role of sustainable technologies in “Smart Makkah,” an ambitious plan to incorporate advanced tech in many of the country’s major cities.

Al-Sulaimani obtained his master’s degree in strategic management in 2007 from Maastrich School of Management in the Netherlands.

He started his career in 1996 as a sales administration manager in Tera Pak in Jeddah until 2006, before moving to Toyota — Abulatif Jameel Co. — in 2007 to serve as the director of supply chain and director of sales marketing (SUV, commercial vehicles) until 2012.

The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah hopes to increase the annual number of pilgrims to 15 million by 2022 and 30 million by 2030 in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.

Al-Sulaimani said that the ministry was working with all stakeholders to ease pilgrims’ experience and improve services every year. His Twitter handle  is: @sulaimanimh1.