Saudi and Iraqi foreign ministers discuss boosting regional stability

Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan meets with his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein in Riyadh. (SPA)
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Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan meets with his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein in Riyadh. (SPA)
Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan meets with his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein in Riyadh. (SPA)
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Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan meets with his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein in Riyadh. (SPA)
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Updated 09 August 2021

Saudi and Iraqi foreign ministers discuss boosting regional stability

Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan meets with his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein in Riyadh. (SPA)
  • They also exchanged views on several regional and international issues
  • Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi invited King Salman to attend a summit in Iraq

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan on Sunday held talks with his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein in the capital, Riyadh.
During the meeting, they reviewed aspects of Saudi-Iraqi relations and ways to support and enhance them to serve the interests of the two countries.
The two sides also discussed strengthening joint bilateral coordination to contribute to regional stability and the preservation of international peace and security.

Prince Faisal and Hussein also exchanged views on several regional and international issues, the Kingdom’s foreign ministry said.
Hussein handed Prince Faisal an invitation from Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi for King Salman to attend a summit in Iraq, Iraq News Agency reported.


Saudi minister hails Saudi Arabia’s role in public health

Saudi minister hails Saudi Arabia’s role in public health
Updated 5 sec ago

Saudi minister hails Saudi Arabia’s role in public health

Saudi minister hails Saudi Arabia’s role in public health
  • Al-Jalajel said that the Kingdom is one of the first countries that, during its leadership of the G20, initiated the extraordinary summit to combine efforts and contain the pandemic

GENEVA: Saudi Health Minister Fahad Al-Jalajel has praised the contributions made by the Kingdom to support global public health.

His remarks came during a speech he delivered at the 75th session of the World Health Organization General Assembly in Geneva, where he headed the Kingdom’s delegation.

Al-Jalajel said that the Kingdom is one of the first countries that, during its leadership of the G20, initiated the extraordinary summit to combine efforts and contain the pandemic, which resulted in unprecedented global cooperation.

Al-Jalajel noted that the Kingdom contributed to the establishment of the WHO’s Access to COVID-19 Tools and COVAX Facility initiatives.

The Saudi minister further said that the total aid provided by the Kingdom through the initiatives and with direct support to developing countries amounted to approximately $770 million.

Al-Jalajel congratulated WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on his reelection for a second five-year term and the renewal of the international community’s confidence in his leadership. 


No entry to Makkah without permit for expats

No entry to Makkah without permit for expats
Updated 4 min 21 sec ago

No entry to Makkah without permit for expats

No entry to Makkah without permit for expats
  • Measure will maintain order and security around holy sites, experts say

MAKKAH: The General Directorate of Public Security has required expatriates wishing to enter Makkah for Hajj to obtain a permit from authorities starting Thursday.

For expatriates to enter the holy city, one of the following documents is required: An entry permit to work in the holy sites issued by the competent authority, a residency permit (iqama) issued from Makkah, an Umrah permit or a Hajj permit.

Brig. Gen. Sami Al-Shuwairekh, the spokesman for Public Security, said that the measure was in line with the regulations for the Hajj pilgrimage for this year.

“As per these instructions, only expatriates who obtain a permit for entry to Makkah will be allowed into the holy city from Thursday. They can obtain permits from the competent authorities. All vehicles and residents that do not have the required documents will be turned back,” Al-Shuwairekh said.

Ahmed Saleh Al-Halabi, who specializes in Hajj and Umrah services, told Arab News that the changes are a result of years of monitoring entry to the holy sites. Practical measures can safely organize the entry of residents to Makkah, he said.

“This is in order to eradicate all sorts of infiltration of the holy sites, especially for residents who do not hold permits, and who are on vacation from their work and head to Makkah to work, or stay with their relatives and friends, and then infiltrate the holy sites to perform the pilgrimage. And as a result, they stay on sidewalks and sleep there which would impact the environment and the level of public cleanliness,” he added.

Dr. Othman Qazzaz, head of the media research and studies department at the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Institute for Hajj and Umrah Research, told Arab News that the Kingdom is also making efforts to improve logistics services during Hajj, aiming to host a successful pilgrimage season.


Organization of Islamic Cooperation chief, US state secretary discuss bilateral ties

Organization of Islamic Cooperation chief, US state secretary discuss bilateral ties
Updated 14 min 37 sec ago

Organization of Islamic Cooperation chief, US state secretary discuss bilateral ties

Organization of Islamic Cooperation chief, US state secretary discuss bilateral ties
  • The two sides agreed on the importance of consolidating relations in various fields, in light of the challenges facing the world, foremost of which are the situations in the Middle East, Africa and Asia

WASHINGTON: During his official visit to the US, Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation Hissein Brahim Taha met US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken at the headquarters of the State Department in Washington, DC.

During the meeting, the two sides discussed bilateral relations between the OIC and the US and ways to enhance them, as well as the outcome of the first round of the strategic dialogue between the OIC and the US held May 23-24 in Washington.

The two sides agreed on the importance of consolidating relations in various fields, in light of the challenges facing the world, foremost of which are the situations in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

They also concurred on the importance of continuing consultations on various issues that top the agenda of the OIC and the US, foremost of which is the fight against terrorism, extremism and Islamophobia, and international efforts to combat COVID-19 and its health, economic and social implications.

Recently, the OIC has spoken of how highly it values the social, cultural and economic achievements of the African continent. The OIC indicated it will spare no effort directing its various development projects to serve Africa. 


Saudi Justice Ministry launches Case Preparation Center 

Saudi Justice Ministry launches Case Preparation Center 
Updated 21 min 1 sec ago

Saudi Justice Ministry launches Case Preparation Center 

Saudi Justice Ministry launches Case Preparation Center 
  • The center prepares claim files to improve output and increase efficiency

RIYADH: Saudi Justice Minister Walid bin Mohammed Al-Samaani on Thursday inaugurated the Case Preparation Center, which prepares claim files to improve output and increase efficiency.

“The center employs well-qualified staff who have the expertise and skills required for operation. This will result in a better experience for litigants through specific criteria and indicators,” the ministry said.

The center provides various services, including for example preliminary study of a claim, the management of notices, summarizing minutes and briefs and composing draft rulings, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

Osama Ghanem Al-Obaidy, adviser and professor of law at the Institute of Public Administration in Riyadh, told Arab News: “The launching of the Case Preparation Center is a good move towards improving case-related services provided by the Justice Ministry. This move will help raise the efficiency of court dockets and the review of cases in an expeditious manner and without unnecessary delay.”

He added: “The move will reduce the time spent in needless corrections and hearing delays due to cases and claims having insufficient, missing or inaccurate information or documentation.” 


Cirque Du Soleil Fuzion catapults into Jeddah with remarkable acts

Cirque Du Soleil Fuzion catapults into Jeddah with remarkable acts
Updated 27 min 1 sec ago

Cirque Du Soleil Fuzion catapults into Jeddah with remarkable acts

Cirque Du Soleil Fuzion catapults into Jeddah with remarkable acts
  • The last show will take place on May 28

JEDDAH: Cirque Du Soleil Fuzion, one of the specially curated events of the Jeddah Season, is the closest you can get to real magic.

The hour-and-a-half show is constant entertainment from the moment it starts until the performers walk off the stage, putting the audience through a rollercoaster of emotion. 

The show starts with two friends — Antonio and Sebastian — arriving on the stage, who set the magic in motion, with Antonio falling in love with a beautiful ballerina. 

Acrobats, trapezists, gymnasts, aerial dancers and other talented performers from 13 different countries ensure the audience is captivated throughout the show. 

Watching the circus unfold on the stage feels like a vivid dream. The performers do not just perform, they also interact with the audience by making them a part of the show, such as by asking them to push around a floating performer with the help of giant helium balloons.

The show’s high and low moments are synchronized with stupendous high-energy upbeat or slow haunting cello music that evoke similar emotions from the audience. 

Mizuki Shinagawa, the aerialist, told Arab News: “I have done some other shows in Cirque Du Soleil, but I feel like this show is the biggest, and with an amazing cast and an amazing choreography.”

Shinagawa added: “Personally, I am really honored that I could perform in front of this audience, you can feel the energy of the crowd and in turn they make us feel really good.”

“And I will give my best during all the performances, so I hope everyone enjoys the show.”

Describing what he feels before every show, Antonio Gomez-Rubio, one of the main characters, said: “In front of an audience I still get at least a little bit nervous, you know you must perform in front of an audience, make them happy and make them laugh. It is what we do, we must make people enjoy what we do, and I think that it is something really humbling.”

“Once you step on the stage you kind of forget everything and become this,” he said gesturing to his costume, “But right before the action there are butterflies in my stomach.”

The audience was extremely receptive to the dazzling acrobatics they witnessed, which the performers appreciated. Gomez-Rubio said: “I want to say thank you, they are a very receptive audience. They are laughing and reacting. It is very nice to be a part of the audience that reacts to what we do. So, thank you for having us.”

Asked which part of the show the audience should be most excited about, Gomez-Rubio said: “As the name suggests it is a fusion of a lot of things and a lot of acts. It has little snippets of many other shows, so it is very special.”

The last show will take place on May 28.