Fraudulent ad promoters on social media could face hefty fines, jail in Saudi Arabia

Fraudulent ad promoters on social media could face hefty fines, jail in Saudi Arabia
Fraudulent ad promoters on social media could face hefty fines and jail in Saudi Arabia. (SPA)
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Updated 20 June 2021

Fraudulent ad promoters on social media could face hefty fines, jail in Saudi Arabia

Fraudulent ad promoters on social media could face hefty fines, jail in Saudi Arabia
  • Ibrahim provides an alternate method for consumers to be informed about a product and avoid being fooled by influencers

JEDDAH: Those who promote and advertise fraudulent goods on social media sites have been warned by Saudi Arabia’s Public Prosecution that they could face up to three years in prison or a SR1 million ($267,000) fine, or both.
Victims of such misselling told Arab News of the emotional and financial costs of falling prey to such schemes.
Noaf Abdulaziz from Jeddah said that she had been deceived into purchasing products that were counterfeit. “There is this one very well-known influencer at a high caliber of fame who was promoting her own makeup brand. Due to her status and constant promotion of her products on social media, I figured they must be legit. I bought them (the products) and threw them out the same day. They weren’t anything like how she had described or promised. I felt like I was fooled.”
This is not an isolated incident for Abdulaziz. She said she wasted SR400 on a travel kit for women that was promoted on social media. “When I came to use it, everything fell apart and nothing worked. I paid for nothing. It was a waste,” she said. “I got tired of all the fakeness and money-hungry people who kept lying to us.” 
It is not only counterfeit beauty products that are being promoted.
Kawthar Ali, a mother of two, revealed how the nature of social media’s promotions of fraudulent products could affect a married couple. “A famous and admired influencer gave birth exactly four months after I did. Naturally, I followed her every move and saw the high-standard products she bought and advised to buy for our babies. I could not afford most of the mothercare products she promoted but I still insisted that my husband pay for them because as a mother you want the best of the best for your children,” she told Arab News.

HIGHLIGHT

When the fines were first announced in 2017, the Consumer Protection Association urged consumers to be aware of the exaggerated language that influencers can use to promote products or services and to remind themselves that influencers are being paid.

“This created a rift between my husband and I when the products were not up to par with how she promoted them.”
When the fines were first announced in 2017, the Consumer Protection Association urged consumers to be aware of the exaggerated language that influencers can use to promote products or services and to remind themselves that influencers are being paid.
“I’ve witnessed too many people I know being affected by promotions. I think people need to remember that these are all paid promotions and everything is exaggerated; they are being robbed of their time, effort and money by individuals who are profiting from lying to their viewers. It’s like a betrayal or a break of trust,” Manal Ibrahim, a designer in Jeddah, told Arab News.
Ibrahim also provides an alternate method for consumers to be informed about a product and avoid being fooled by influencers. “Certain brands have promotional pages on Instagram. This way a person can go to the page of the company, research the products themselves and read reviews on them before deciding to pay.”


Who’s Who: Ahmed Eisa Abu Amara, chief legal council at Saudi Arabia’s Council of Cooperative Health Insurance

Who’s Who: Ahmed Eisa Abu Amara, chief legal council at Saudi Arabia’s Council of Cooperative Health Insurance
Updated 44 sec ago

Who’s Who: Ahmed Eisa Abu Amara, chief legal council at Saudi Arabia’s Council of Cooperative Health Insurance

Who’s Who: Ahmed Eisa Abu Amara, chief legal council at Saudi Arabia’s Council of Cooperative Health Insurance

Ahmed Eisa Abu Amara has served as chief legal council at the Council of Cooperative Health Insurance since 2019.

In early 2019, he became general director of the General Department of Legal Affairs at the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development. In 2016, he became head of legal affairs for the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee.

From 2007 to 2013, he worked as a senior legal consultant and senior insurance supervisor at the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA).

Since 2018, Amara has been an international arbitrator at the International Council of Arbitration in Lausanne, Switzerland. Also in 2018, he served as an associate lecturer in commercial law at Majmaah University.  

He is currently an arbitrator at the National Sports Arbitration Tribunal in Kuwait and at the Saudi Arbitration Center in Riyadh since 2020.

In January 2015, he was appointed honorary commissioner at the Louisiana Department of Insurance by Commissioner Jim Donelon.

In 2011, he received his master’s degree in law from the Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. He also received a bachelor’s degree in law from King Saud University in Riyadh.

Amara has acquired several diplomas in various fields, including a diploma in the management of Olympic sports institutions from the International Olympic Academy; an international insurance and reinsurance diploma from the Chartered Insurance Institute and Lloyd’s Market Association in London; and a diploma in real estate from Richland College, Texas.

In 2018, he enrolled in the Professional Development Program at Harvard University, studying courses on management and leadership.


Historic forum brings together Iraqi scholars in Makkah

Historic forum brings together Iraqi scholars in Makkah
Updated 05 August 2021

Historic forum brings together Iraqi scholars in Makkah

Historic forum brings together Iraqi scholars in Makkah
  • The Forum of the Iraqi Religious Scholars was organized by the Muslim World League (MWL)
  • MWL secretary-general said the Iraqi government has made huge steps to strengthen its country’s identity

MAKKAH: An international forum about valuing the role of Saudi Arabia in strengthening peaceful coexistence concluded on Wednesday by stressing unity and a unanimous position in rejecting the rhetoric of sectarianism, hatred, and clash.

Organized by the Muslim World League (MWL), the Forum of the Iraqi Religious Scholars in Makkah was held in the presence of senior Sunni and Shiite scholars.

The forum’s final statement stressed the need to activate the “Makkah Document” and open channels of constructive dialogue and positive communication among scholars so they can resolve issues and crises.

The final statement also recommended setting a body for cultural communication between sects that the Muslim societies consist of, in addition to a coordinating committee that brings together Iraqi religious scholars and MWL.

The forum stressed the need to confront religious extremism from all sources, in addition to strengthening means of rejecting the rhetoric of intellectual and cultural hatred in the Muslim world.

MWL secretary-general Sheikh Mohammed Al-Issa said that the Iraqi government has made huge steps to strengthen its country’s identity, adding that “in their meeting today, the Iraqi religious scholars have warned of the disease of sectarianism.”

In his inaugural speech, Al-Issa said: “Between Sunnis and Shiites, there is nothing but ideal fraternal understanding and coexistence, and cooperation and integration in the context of sincere compassion, while understanding the specificity of each sect within the same religion.”

Pshtiwan Sadiq Abdullah, minister of endowments and religious affairs in Kurdistan-Iraq, said his government did not spare any effort in building the new and progressive federal Iraq, and that it has contributed to drafting the constitution, which guaranteed the rights of all components.

He also said Kurdistan was — and still is — a safe haven as it enjoys peaceful coexistence and respect for all religions and sects.

Sheikh Ahmed Hassan Al-Taha, a chief scholar of the Iraqi Jurisprudence Council, praised the role of the Kingdom under the leadership of King Salman in strengthening regional and international peace while also thwarting extremism.

He cited the 2006 Makkah Document as the best evidence to stop the bloodshed in a wounded Iraq.

“Kurds were pioneers in seeking good despite the ethnic, religious and sectarian diversity, which made Kurdistan-Iraq a role model at all levels,” Sheikh Abdullah Said Waysi, the head of the Kurdistan Islamic Scholars Union, said.

He also said the efforts of the religious institutions in Kurdistan-Iraq revolve around strengthening the principle of communication and cooperation among all in Iraq, based on serving society and the interests of its citizens.

A delegation of senior Iraqi religious scholars arrived in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday evening to participate in the forum.


Saudi air defenses intercept Houthi drone launched from Yemen

Saudi air defenses intercept Houthi drone launched from Yemen
Updated 05 August 2021

Saudi air defenses intercept Houthi drone launched from Yemen

Saudi air defenses intercept Houthi drone launched from Yemen

RIYADH: The Arab coalition said on Wednesday that Saudi air defenses intercepted an explosive-laden drone launched by the Iran-backed Houthi militia in Yemen, state TV reported.
The coalition said the drone was targeting the southern city of Khamis Mushait.
It added that it is taking operational measures to thwart all hostile attempts to target populated areas and civilians objects in the Kingdom, in accordance with international law.


Saudi minister meets US, UN, IDB officials in Riyadh

Saudi minister meets US, UN, IDB officials in Riyadh
Updated 17 min 2 sec ago

Saudi minister meets US, UN, IDB officials in Riyadh

Saudi minister meets US, UN, IDB officials in Riyadh

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir held three meetings with foreign and domestic officials on Wednesday in Riyadh. 

Al-Jubeir met with Martina Strong, chargé d’affaires of the US Embassy in Riyadh, to review Saudi-US bilateral relations along with regional and international developments of common concern.

The Saudi minister also met with Mohammed bin Sulaiman Al-Jasser, who is the new chairman of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB), as they reviewed the support provided by the Kingdom to IDB since its founding.

In another meeting, Al-Jubeir received Jehangir Khan, director of the UN Counter-Terrorism Centre. In the meeting, they reviewed the fields of cooperation between the Kingdom and the UN Counter-Terrorism Centre, along with the country’s efforts to fight terrorism.

Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the UN, Abdallah Al-Mouallimi, and the foreign ministry’s undersecretary for multilateral international affairs, Abdul Rahman bin Ibrahim Al-Rassi, also attended the meeting with Al-Jubeir and Khan.


Saudi FM: Hezbollah’s power is the main cause of Lebanon's crisis

Saudi FM: Hezbollah’s power is the main cause of Lebanon's crisis
Updated 04 August 2021

Saudi FM: Hezbollah’s power is the main cause of Lebanon's crisis

Saudi FM: Hezbollah’s power is the main cause of Lebanon's crisis
  • Prince Faisal reiterated the Kingdom’s continuous solidarity with the Lebanese people in times of crises
  • The minister said any aid provided to Lebanon by the Kingdom depends on serious reforms being carried out

RIYADH: Hezbollah’s insistence on imposing its hegemony on the Lebanese state is the main cause of Lebanon’s problems, Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister said on Wednesday.
Speaking at an international conference on Lebanon marking the first anniversary of the Beirut Port explosion, Prince Faisal bin Farhan urged Lebanese politicians to confront the organization’s behavior in order to achieve the will of the Lebanese people to combat corruption and implement necessary reforms in the crisis-stricken country.
Prince Faisal added that any aid provided to Lebanon by the Kingdom depends on serious reforms being carried out while ensuring the money reaches its beneficiaries and not siphoned off by corrupt officials.
“We are concerned that the investigations into the Beirut port explosion have not yet yielded any tangible results,” the foreign minister said. 
He praised the efforts of France and the international community to support Lebanon and its people, stressing the need for these efforts to be accompanied by real reforms to overcome the economic and political crises sweeping Lebanon. 
Prince Faisal reiterated the Kingdom’s continuous solidarity with the Lebanese people in times of crises and challenges, and stressed Saudi Arabia’s commitment to its contributions to the reconstruction and development of Lebanon.
“The Kingdom was one of the first countries to respond to providing humanitarian aid to Lebanon after the horrific explosion that occurred exactly a year ago in the port of Beirut through the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief). KSRelief continues to implement its programs in Beirut to this day,” Prince Faisal said.
The donor conference to raise emergency aid for Lebanon's crippled economy on Wednesday raised $370 million, French President Emmanuel Macron’s office said.