King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability

King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability
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The Strategic Vision Group meeting between Russia and the Islamic world is held in Jeddah. (Supplied)
King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability
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Prince Khalid Al-Faisal speaks during the summit. (Supplied)
King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability
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The Strategic Vision Group meeting between Russia and the Islamic world is being held to discuss common issues between the two . (Supplied)
King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability
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The Strategic Vision Group meeting between Russia and the Islamic world is being held to discuss common issues between the two . (Supplied)
King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability
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The Strategic Vision Group meeting between Russia and the Islamic world is being held to discuss common issues between the two . (Supplied)
King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability
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The Strategic Vision Group meeting between Russia and the Islamic world is being held to discuss common issues between the two . (Supplied)
King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability
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Updated 24 November 2021

King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability

King Salman: Strategic meetings between Islamic world, Russia important for global security, stability
  • The king said Saudi-Russian relations are strong and historical
  • Added that Russia has deep-rooted relations with Islamic world, evidenced by its presence as OIC observer

JEDDAH: King Salman confirmed Saudi Arabia’s belief in the importance of strategic meetings between the Islamic world and the Russian Federation for enhancing regional and international security and stability.
In a speech delivered by the Emir of Makkah Prince Khaled Al-Faisal on behalf of the Saudi king, he said that the Islamic region is characterized by tolerance and moderation, and this is why it accepts all races and ethnicities.




Makkah governor Prince Khaled Al-Faisal delivers a speech on behalf of King Salman. (Supplied)


“Saudi Arabia has an honorable role in adopting the principles of moderation and coexistence, as it has striven to support regional and international efforts in this field, and has presented many initiatives in this regard, most notably, the adoption of the Makkah Declaration, supporting the office of the UN Alliance of Civilizations,” he said.
The king added in his speech that Saudi Arabia is committed to support any future efforts aimed at serving these principles, believing that difference does not mean discord and that tolerance calls for transcendence.
He added that the Saudi-Russian relations, which have extended for a period of 95 years, are strong and historical.

“These relations have witnessed qualitative leaps in recent years, and culminated in high-level visits between the two countries. These visits resulted in signing many joint agreements in all economic, cultural, and defense fields. They also paved the way for the development of these relations and consolidating the level of trust between the two countries,” said Prince Khaled Al-Faisal on behalf of the king.




Attendees take part in the the Group of Strategic Vision Russia — Islamic World summit. (SPA)

King Salman said that Russia and the Islamic world share deep cultural heritage, which paves the way for activating the role of religious institutions, developing an environment that supports peaceful coexistence between followers of different religions and races, preserving the role of the family and spiritual values, and protecting human rights.

He added that Russia has deep-rooted relations with the Islamic world, as evidenced by its presence as an observer of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation for more than 15 years, which has resulted in fruitful cooperation with the organization.

“He added that more than 20 million Muslims live in harmony with their communities, and enjoy the right to freely practice their religious rites,” he said.

He pointed out that the dynamics of the relationship of Islamic countries with Russia is diverse, and prepares for building bridges of scientific and technological cooperation and promoting them in the field of development, education, software, and applications of the fourth industrial revolution.

Saudi Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Russian Federation Abdulrahman Al Ahmed told Arab News that Saudi-Russia relations began in 1926 when Karim Hakimov was appointed as an envoy to the late King Abdul Aziz.




The Strategic Vision Group meeting between Russia and the Islamic world is being held to discuss common issues. (Supplied)

“That was followed by letters between the leaders of the two countries. In 1932, King Faisal, who was at that time the viceroy of the Hijaz and foreign minister, made an official visit to Moscow. In 1990, Prince Saud Al-Faisal visited Moscow to resume relations and sign agreements and political discussions between the two countries,” he said.

He added that the relations became even stronger at the turn of the century when King Abdullah and Prince Sultan visited Moscow.

“There was a qualitative leap in the relations between the two countries through the visits made by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to Moscow in 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018. These visits were crowned with a visit by King Salman to Moscow in 2017, during which a number of agreements were signed. In 2019, President Vladimir Putin visited Riyadh, and again, several agreements were inked.”

He stressed that cooperation between Saudi Arabia and Russia has reached wider horizons at all levels of the economy, in policy, culture, arts, and energy. “Saudi Arabia and Russia are members at OPEC+ and other fields,” he added.

Commenting on how such meetings could enhance cooperation between Russia and the Islamic world, Vitaliy Naumkin, director of the Institute of Oriental Studies, told Arab News that: “This conference is very important as it is held for the first time during the pandemic. Moreover, there are also many people attending this conference. Also, very important representatives are present. So we need more cooperation because of the pandemic and the new development in the world.”

Naumkin added that the two sides have signed important agreements.

“We are signing other important agreements today here in Saudi Arabia, and these will be followed by new steps, and I am sure these steps will be very positive.

“There will be more cooperation between Russia and the Islamic world, especially Saudi Arabia, which is located in the center of the Islamic world, and it has a key role in this cooperation.”

Meanwhile, in an article posted on the Saudi Embassy’s website on Monday, Al- Ahmed said that among the urgent international issues the group will pay attention to are combating terrorism, international peace and security, the role of international organizations in the peaceful settlement of disputes, promoting a culture of peace, and economic cooperation in the post-COVID-19 world.

He added that the meeting would also focus on dialogue and cultural and humanitarian rapprochement, as well as other demanding issues.

“In this context, I am pleased to commend the efforts the Group of Strategic Vision “Russia — Islamic World” has been making in rapprochement between the Russian Federation and the Muslim world through joint work to enhance dialogue and understanding, reject extremist ideas, and strengthen joint measures to combat international terrorism,” Al-Ahmed said.

“I would like to point out the firm positions of the Russian Federation on the just issues of the Muslim world and the Russian political leadership’s keenness to achieve harmony, understanding, tolerance and coexistence between the people of the Russian Federation and the peoples of Islamic countries to face common challenges and achieve progress and prosperity for all,” he added.

Guests and speakers at the event included Rustam Minnikhanov, president of the Republic of Tatarstan and chairman of the Group of Strategic Vision – “Russia — Islamic World”; Hussein Ibrahim Taha, secretary-general of the OIC; Walid bin Abdul Karim, Saudi deputy minister of foreign affairs, and others.


Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives in UAE on next stop of GCC tour

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives in UAE on next stop of GCC tour
Updated 59 min 14 sec ago

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives in UAE on next stop of GCC tour

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives in UAE on next stop of GCC tour
  • Saudi crown prince’s official tour of the GCC states comes from an earlier royal directive by King Salman

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrived in the UAE capital, Abu Dhabi, on Tuesday, on the second leg of his tour of Gulf states aimed at boosting relations.
Earlier on Tuesday, Prince Mohammed left Oman, the first stop of his tour of neighboring Gulf Cooperation Council states, where he met with Sultan Haitham bin Tariq.
The crown prince sent a cable to Sultan Haitham following the visit, thanking him for the warm reception and hospitality he and his accompanying delegation received, Saudi Press Agency reported.
“The discussions we had with Your Majesty confirmed the strength of the brotherly relations between our two countries, and the common desire to deepen cooperation between them in all fields,” he said, “which aims to achieve the interests of the two countries and enhance regional security and stability.”
The sultan and crown prince held talks where they reviewed bilateral relations and aspects of bilateral cooperation in several fields, and discussed the latest regional and international developments.
Minister of Energy Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman, Minister of Sport Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal, Minister of Interior Prince Abdul Aziz bin Saud bin Naif, Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan, and Minister of Culture Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan also attended the meetings.
The two sides also welcomed a joint statement announcing the opening of the first direct land crossing between the two countries. The 725km Omani-Saudi road will contribute to the smooth movement of citizens of the two countries and the integration of supply chains, the statement said.
Sultan Haitham awarded the crown prince the Oman Civil Order of the first degree – one of the highest Omani honors – during their official talks at Al-Alam Palace in Muscat. The distinction is awarded to kings, heads of state, crown princes and heads of government whose countries have distinguished relations with Oman.
Prince Mohammed’s tour comes after an earlier royal directive from King Salman to communicate with GCC leaders and strengthen ties, and also includes visits to Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait to discuss ways to develop bilateral relations in all fields, as well as other issues of common interest.


Saudi Arabia, Oman agree to strengthen media and business competitiveness

Saudi Arabia, Oman agree to strengthen media and business competitiveness
Updated 07 December 2021

Saudi Arabia, Oman agree to strengthen media and business competitiveness

Saudi Arabia, Oman agree to strengthen media and business competitiveness
  • On the eve of Saudi Crown Prince Salman’s arrival in Muscat, Saudi Arabia and Oman signed 13 memoranda of understanding, reportedly worth more than $10 billion and covering several sectors

DUBAI: Oman and Saudi Arabia signed on Tuesday a memorandum of understanding in the field of media related to strengthening cooperation between the two countries in news, audio-visual and print media, Oman’s state news agency reported.
Another memorandum aimed at enhancing the competitiveness of national industries and marketing research, encouraging joint activities and developing countries’ ease of business and e-commerce index was also signed. 
The latest round of cooperation comes a day after Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman arrived in Muscat to meet with Sultan Haitham bin Tarik as part of his official tour of GCC states.
On the eve of Saudi Crown Prince Salman’s arrival in Muscat, Saudi Arabia and Oman signed 13 memoranda of understanding, reportedly worth more than $10 billion and covering several sectors.


154 KSrelief food aid trucks sent to Yemen

The convoy included 30,399 food baskets (3.252 tons) for distribution in 15 Yemeni governorates. (KSrelief)
The convoy included 30,399 food baskets (3.252 tons) for distribution in 15 Yemeni governorates. (KSrelief)
Updated 07 December 2021

154 KSrelief food aid trucks sent to Yemen

The convoy included 30,399 food baskets (3.252 tons) for distribution in 15 Yemeni governorates. (KSrelief)
  • KSrelief has implemented, in cooperation with its many humanitarian partners, a total of 644 projects in Yemen

RIYADH: Dr. Abdullah Al Rabeeah, Supervisor General of King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSrelief), inaugurated the launch of 154 relief trucks from Saudi Arabia on Monday. 

The convoy included 30,399 food baskets (3.252 tons) for distribution in 15 Yemeni governorates.

The food aid is the first to be sent by KSrelief to Yemen as part of the comprehensive “Yemen Food Security Support Project”, which will continue into 2022.

In comments to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Dr. Al-Rabeeah stated that this convoy comes as an extension of the commitment of the government of King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to provide ongoing assistance to the Yemeni people and to support them during their current humanitarian crisis.

Al-Rabeeah added that Monday’s convoy from KSrelief is part of the center’s impartial, comprehensive assistance to people in need in all parts of Yemen, and that all aid is provided according solely to need and without any other motive.

He added that the 154-vehicle convoy is the first in what will amount to a total of 973 trucks carrying more than 192,000 food baskets (20.540 tons) for a total cost of $29,978,000. The goal of the massive food aid delivery project is to alleviate the suffering of crisis-affected families across Yemen.

Al-Rabeeah said the aid will help to increase food security and improve the quality of life of Yemenis, adding that this aid is particularly important in light of the additional challenges being posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

He stressed that KSrelief was keen to ensure that all aid reaches its targeted beneficiaries, and that the food baskets would be distributed through United Nations organizations and local partners in coordination with Yemen’s High Relief Committee.

KSrelief has implemented, in cooperation with its many humanitarian partners, a total of 644 projects in Yemen covering all key humanitarian sectors.


Who’s Who: Fahad Almutlaq, CEO of Sharqia Development Authority

Fahad Almutlaq. (Supplied)
Fahad Almutlaq. (Supplied)
Updated 07 December 2021

Who’s Who: Fahad Almutlaq, CEO of Sharqia Development Authority

Fahad Almutlaq. (Supplied)

Fahad Almutlaq has served as CEO of Sharqia Development Authority since September 2019.
He has more than 20 years of experience in managing comprehensive development strategies, urban planning, building integrated development, legislation and empowerment initiatives. Almutlaq served as chief strategy officer at the Council for Economic Affairs and Development, which took part in the national strategy of Saudi Arabia, Vision 2030, between 2017 and 2019.
Before that, he served as CEO of the Arabian Industry and Services Group from June 2014 to August 2018. Almutlaq led significant mergers and acquisitions, and directed strategies and plans to accommodate social changes in the region.
He has held several positions in the Saudi Ministry of Defense, building international experience through working with one of the world’s largest aerospace and defense contractors, BAE Systems.
Almutlaq also worked with major science and technology companies and oversaw the construction and operations of the largest aerospace and industrial facility in the Middle East between 2011 and 2014. Within the ministry, he served as head of business development and future support and planning in 2010, and as program manager, based in the UK, between 2007 until 2010.
He held several positions in the Saudi Electricity Company, including head of the project management and planning division. Almutlaq also worked on civil, urban and electromechanical projects between 2004 and 2008, served as senior project engineer between 2003 and 2004, and before that worked as a planning engineer in the department of facilities planning and land use from 2001 to 2003.
He now serves on the board of several organizations.
Almutlaq holds two master’s degrees and an MBA in project and construction management. He has completed several practical and executive programs, covering strategic planning and leadership training.


Saudi environmental security officers protect sea and land ecosystems

Saudi Arabia is committed to protecting the environment and its natural resources. (Twitter: @SFES_KSA)
Saudi Arabia is committed to protecting the environment and its natural resources. (Twitter: @SFES_KSA)
Updated 07 December 2021

Saudi environmental security officers protect sea and land ecosystems

Saudi Arabia is committed to protecting the environment and its natural resources. (Twitter: @SFES_KSA)
  • Among the arrested are illegal firewood traders

RIYADH: The Saudi Special Forces for Environmental Security have apprehended dozens of offenders for environmental violations as part of a recent crackdown.

The forces, under the command of the Ministry of Interior, arrested individuals who illegally moved sand and soil in Jeddah and Tabuk. People who illegally entered the Imam Turki bin Abdullah Royal Reserve in northeast Riyadh and hunted wildlife in restricted areas were also detained.

Others were arrested while transporting local firewood and trafficking endangered fungi in Al-Muzahmiyya Governorate. Several other citizens were also caught selling local firewood in other regions of the Kingdom.

Saudi Arabia is committed to protecting the environment and its natural resources across its vast territory. The Saudi environment law focuses on conservation, protection, development, pollution prevention, public health protection and the rational use of natural resources.

It also aims to make environmental planning an integral part of comprehensive development in industrial, agricultural and urban areas.

One practice that harms the Saudi environment is illegal dredging. Talal S. Al-Rasheed, a consultant at Gulf Energy for Environmental Consultations, warned that dredging and similar practices can negatively impact the environment and economy if studies are not conducted beforehand. Reduced fish stocks and damage to coral reefs are major consequences of poorly planned and illegal dredging.

Al-Rasheed added that taking sand and soil without a license is a “major disaster” because it changes the nature of the land by creating deep pits that cause accidents and endanger the lives of road users.

“Because the marine environment is sensitive to its habitat, when anything changes in nature, creatures begin to shift to other locations. Some of these habitats might not suitable for living. Because of the availability of suitable places for marine organisms, every species in the marine environment has a designated place to adapt to,” Al-Rasheed said.

Nasser M. Al-Hamidi, an environmental activist, said that burning or cutting trees in natural forests for wood is harmful to the environment and local communities due to smoke pollution.

He added that any attack on the environment, including dredging and stealing natural materials such as mountain rock deposits, poses a severe threat to the Kingdom’s natural beauty, which should be preserved for future generations.