King Salman says Saudi Arabia is proactive in fighting extremist ideology and terrorism

King Salman says Saudi Arabia is proactive in fighting extremist ideology and terrorism
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Updated 23 November 2020

King Salman says Saudi Arabia is proactive in fighting extremist ideology and terrorism

King Salman says Saudi Arabia is proactive in fighting extremist ideology and terrorism
  • Statement came during a phone call with Charles Michel, the president of the European Council

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s King Salman said the Kingdom is proactive in taking initiatives aimed at fighting extremist ideology and terrorism.
The statement came during a phone call with Charles Michel, the president of the European Council, Saudi Press Agency reported. 
At the beginning of the call, Michel congratulated the King on the “remarkable success” of the G20 Summit hosted in Riyadh at the weekend.
Michel expressed his appreciation for the Kingdom's remarkable efforts in combating extremism and terrorism, and the Council's desire to enhance cooperation in these fields with the Kingdom, based on its leadership role in the Islamic world. 
King Salman also affirmed Saudi Arabia's keenness to strengthen relations with EU countries.
He indicated that the Kingdom is proactive in taking initiatives aimed at combating extremist ideology and terrorism, promoting tolerance and coexistence among peoples, and dialogue between religions.


Saudi Arabia’s first COVID-19 vaccine set for clinical trials

Saudi Arabia’s first COVID-19 vaccine set for clinical trials
Updated 27 min 41 sec ago

Saudi Arabia’s first COVID-19 vaccine set for clinical trials

Saudi Arabia’s first COVID-19 vaccine set for clinical trials
  • It will go through rigorous testing and several trial stages before it is approved for use by the Saudi Food and Drug Authority

RIYADH: Preclinical studies on the first Saudi vaccine against COVID-19 have been completed.

Professor of epidemiology Dr. Iman Almansour, who heads the team of researchers working on the vaccine at the Institute for Research and Medical Consultations (IRMC), affiliated with Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University (IAU), confirmed to Arab News on Friday that the studies were complete, and said clinical trials would begin as soon as “the proper approvals” had been given.

She did not specify when that is expected to happen.

The Ministry of Education is financing the team’s project. The team’s research paper has been published in the peer-reviewed journal Pharmaceuticals.

According to the published paper, the vaccine has so far proven effective, when used on animals, in eliciting antibodies that will target the virus. “The vaccine is given to the body to build protein inside cells, which stimulate the body to produce immunity specific to the S antigen,” Dr. Almansour explained.

Dr. Turki Almugaiteeb, director of Healthcare and Life Sciences at RPD Innovations, which runs the National Vaccine and Biomanufacturing Center, told Arab News: “There is a great focus on the results of medical research because of the pandemic. Research can play a great role in developing a vaccine that can be adopted and further developed in the future. We can say that the Kingdom has a strong infrastructure, which can help produce and manufacture a national vaccine.”

Both Almugaiteeb and Almansour stressed that the experimental vaccine will need to go through rigorous testing and several trial stages before it is approved for use by the Saudi Food and Drug Authority.

Prof. Nasser Al-Aqeeli, the deputy minister of education for research and innovation, said the ministry supported programs at the Kingdom’s universities with more than SR500 million ($133.3 million) in 2020.