Riyadh and Rome share similar views on peace, says Italian ambassador

Riyadh Mayor Prince Faisal bin Abdulaziz attends the Italian National Day reception in Riyadh on Thursday night. (SPA)
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Riyadh Mayor Prince Faisal bin Abdulaziz attends the Italian National Day reception in Riyadh on Thursday night. (SPA)
Riyadh and Rome share similar views on peace, says Italian ambassador
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Riyadh Mayor Prince Faisal bin Abdulaziz with Italian ambassador Roberto Cantone at national day reception. (SPA)
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Updated 04 June 2022

Riyadh and Rome share similar views on peace, says Italian ambassador

Riyadh Mayor Prince Faisal bin Abdulaziz attends the Italian National Day reception in Riyadh on Thursday night. (SPA)
  • Embassy hosted National Day reception after two-year hiatus

RIYADH: Italy and Saudi Arabia share a common belief to live in peace, the Italian ambassador to Saudi Arabia Roberto Cantone said as he commended the Kingdom for its stance on stability in the Middle East and the broader Mediterranean region.




Italian ambassador to Saudi Arabia Roberto Cantone speaking at National Day function. (AN photo by Rashid Hassan)

Speaking at the National Day reception that he hosted at the Italian embassy on Thursday night, Cantone said: “Italy and Saudi Arabia have been enjoying an outstanding level of engagement in various fields. Our two capitals keep similar views on many regional and international issues of common concern. Saudi and Italian institutions have the opportunity to work together on some extremely important international political, and economic projects during our consequent G20 presidency in 2020 and 2021.




Italian ambassador to Saudi Arabia Roberto Cantone speaking at National Day function. (AN photo by Rashid Hassan)

“Both founding members of the United Nations, Italy and Saudi Arabia share a common belief that the world must live in peace. In this regard, I would like to commend and congratulate Saudi Arabia on its international stance in the maintenance of stability in the Middle East, and in the broader Mediterranean, and for allowing its role in the appeasement of regional tensions.

“We believe that Saudi Arabia, in its new roles as a regional and international leader, can play a positive action in all contexts in which it can use its soft power for the cause of peace in the Middle East, in Europe, and globally.




Guests at Italian National Day reception. (AN photo by Rashid Hassan)

“I got great pleasure in welcoming you all tonight to celebrate the Italian National Day. Italy has been a democratic republic since June 2, 1946, when a national referendum created the Italian republic. We observe this day as the Italian National Day every year in Riyadh. We are meeting tonight after two years because of pandemic restrictions in the previous two years.

“Italian National Day in Riyadh, for me and my team, has an even more important meaning as we celebrate this year, the 90th anniversary of the relations between Italy and Saudi Arabia. On this occasion, we are honored to be joined by a delegation of the Italian Parliament here.”

On Tuesday, a delegation from the Italian Parliament led by MP Elena Morelli, chairperson of the Italian-Saudi Parliamentary Friendship Committee, and Senator Marco Pellegrini was received by Hanan Al-Ahmadi, assistant speaker of the Shoura Council in Riyadh.




Guests at Italian National Day reception. (AN photo by Rashi Hassan)

Al-Ahmadi emphasized the depth of bilateral relations between the two countries and stressed the importance of working to enhance the relationship between the Shoura Council and the Italian parliament to strengthen ties in politics, economics, commerce, culture, and tourism, among others.

Morelli also highlighted the recent cultural and social changes in the Kingdom resulting from the country’s Vision 2030 development and diversification program, along with its initiatives to promote tolerance, moderation and dialogue, and support international efforts to promote peace and stability and combat terrorism.

“They successfully completed on Thursday a three-day visit to Saudi Arabia that was aimed at strengthening further parliamentary ties between our countries,” said Cantone.

“In the framework of the anniversary, we are also working with the Ministry of Finance in the preparation of the Joint Commission between Italy and Saudi Arabia, which will be later this month, in order to take our economic cooperation toward more ambitious goals.”

Riyadh Mayor Prince Faisal bin Abdulaziz attended the Italian National Day reception on behalf of Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar.

The event was also attended by members of the diplomatic corps and Saudi officials.


Saudi KSrelief chief tours refugee centers in Poland

Saudi KSrelief chief tours refugee centers in Poland
Updated 30 sec ago

Saudi KSrelief chief tours refugee centers in Poland

Saudi KSrelief chief tours refugee centers in Poland

RIYADH: The general-supervisor of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center, Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, visited a center run by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees in the Polish city of Jyszow on Friday, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Saturday.

Al-Rabeeah was accompanied by the Kingdom’s ambassador to Poland, Saad bin Saleh Al-Saleh, and UNHCR representatives on a tour of the facilities, which are closely linked to aid provided as part of Saudi Arabia’s $10 million grant to support refugees from Ukraine, of which $5 million was allocated through KSrelief to the UNHCR.

Al-Rabeeah toured the UNHCR shelter distribution center to see how the aid is delivered to beneficiaries and what plans are in place to respond to refugees’ urgent needs.

Al-Rabeeah said that the housing aid provided by the Kingdom targets nearly 100,000 refugees from Ukraine, and stressed that Saudi Arabia is always keen to support refugees anywhere in the world.

He also commended the high level of professionalism demonstrated by the UNHCR.

Al-Rabeeah also visited a medical transport station in the city of Przemysl, which currently hosts a large number of refugees from Ukraine.

During the visit, the station’s director, Rafał Kijanka, clarified the station’s efforts to provide necessary medical aid to refugees from Ukraine in Poland with financial assistance from Saudi Arabia.


No permit for children below 5 years in Grand Mosque of Makkah

No permit for children below 5 years in Grand Mosque of Makkah
Updated 13 August 2022

No permit for children below 5 years in Grand Mosque of Makkah

No permit for children below 5 years in Grand Mosque of Makkah

RIYADH: Children below five years old can enter the Grand Mosque of Makkah without a permit, the Saudi Ministry of Hajj and Umrah said on Saturday.

“Parents can take their children who are below five years old without the need to get them a permit,” the ministry said in a Twitter post.

However, children over five years old must obtain a permit through the “Eatmarna” app to enter the holy site.

Earlier, Saudi Arabia announced that holders of all types of visas will be able to perform Umrah during their stay in the Kingdom.


Arab states express solidarity with Saudi Arabia over suicide bomb blast

Arab states express solidarity with Saudi Arabia over suicide bomb blast
Updated 13 August 2022

Arab states express solidarity with Saudi Arabia over suicide bomb blast

Arab states express solidarity with Saudi Arabia over suicide bomb blast
  • Abdullah Al-Shehri detonated a suicide vest when authorities attempted to arrest him in Jeddah, injuring four
  • Arab world praised the Kingdom's effort to maintain security and safeguard lives

DUBAI: Arab nations have expressed solidarity with Saudi Arabia on Saturday in the wake of the death of a suicide bomber in Jeddah.

Abdullah Al-Shehri detonated a suicide vest when authorities attempted to arrest him in Jeddah, injuring a Pakistani resident and three security men.

In a statement, the UAE condemned the blast, reiterating its stance against “all threats to the Kingdom’s security and stability.”

The country’s ministry of foreign affairs commended the efficiency of the Saudi security forces during the operation and measures taken to maintain public safety, conveying wishes for a speedy recovery of those injured in the blast.

Bahrain was another Gulf country that reaffirmed “unwavering solidarity” with Saudi Arabia and commended relentless efforts to preserve national security. It also praised the vigilance of security forces in dealing with the wanted man.

Kuwait reiterated its backing to the Kingdom’s effort against security threats. “Kuwait stands by Saudi Arabia and supports all measures it may take to safeguard its security and the safety of its people,” Kuwait’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement published by state news agency (KUNA).

The ministry lauded the efficient security operation and the authorities’ targeted efforts to block any bid that poses a threat to the Kingdom’s stability.

In a statement published by the state news agency (PETRA), Jordan conveyed support to the Kingdom “in every step taken to protect its security.”
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Haitham Abu Alfoul praised efforts of Saudi security forces in addressing threats to the Kingdom’s stability and safety.

 

 

Egypt also voiced support to Saudi Arabia’s fight against “all forms of terrorism” and any violation that threatens national security.  

In an official statement, the Egyptian foreign ministry hailed the Kingdom’s proactive measures and capabilities to track down terrorists and safeguard lives.  

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) condemned the bombing and praised the Kingdom’s firm action against any threat that undermines its safety and security.

Meanwhile, Arab Parliament Speaker Adel Al-Asoumi stressed on his confidence in the Kingdom’s vigilance to protect its vital facilities, combat terrorism, and ensure the safety of its citizens and expats.

On Friday, the Saudi security state announced the operation of tracking down and arresting Al-Shehri, who was among nine wanted individuals involved in a 2015 terrorist operation that targeted a mosque in Saudi Arabia. He has been listed as a wanted person by authorities in the Kingdom for the past seven years, according to the statement.


Saudi authorities arrest resident with 50kgs of hashish in Asir’s Rijal Alma’a

Saudi authorities arrest resident with 50kgs of hashish in Asir’s Rijal Alma’a
Updated 13 August 2022

Saudi authorities arrest resident with 50kgs of hashish in Asir’s Rijal Alma’a

Saudi authorities arrest resident with 50kgs of hashish in Asir’s Rijal Alma’a
  • The Yemeni resident had hidden the narcotics in the vehicle he was driving when authorities discovered drugs, according to SPA

Authorities in Saudi Arabia arrested a resident who was in possession of 50 kilograms of hashish in the Rijal Alma’a governorate in the Asir region, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Saturday. 

The Yemeni resident had hidden the narcotics in the vehicle he was driving when authorities discovered drugs, according to SPA. 

Saudi Arabia will continue on attempts to import and export drugs to preserve public security and protection, the Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority said in a statement on Friday, after more than one million contraband pills were found hidden in a consignment that came into the Kingdom through the port of Jeddah.

The authority called on citizens and residents to report any smuggling-related crimes and violations of the provisions of the unified customs system in complete secrecy.


Saudi Arabia expands Umrah with visa allowance

Saudi Arabia expands Umrah with visa allowance
Updated 13 August 2022

Saudi Arabia expands Umrah with visa allowance

Saudi Arabia expands Umrah with visa allowance
  • The Visit Saudi platform provides e-services, including the issuance of electronic visas and purchasing of Umrah bundles. The service is available at visitsaudi.com/ar.
  • Move targets Vision 2030 goal of 30m pilgrims per year

JEDDAH: All Saudi visa holders are now permitted to perform Umrah in the wake of a decision by the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah.

The move aims to ease bureaucracy and open the pilgrimage to more visitors — a target of Vision 2030.

It comes in conjunction with the start of this year’s Umrah season and as part of efforts to facilitate rituals, provide high-quality services and enrich the religious experiences of pilgrims.

The Maqam platform connects pilgrims with authorized tourism companies and agencies. Users from outside the Kingdom can also apply for an Umrah visa, as well as choose service bundles. The platform is available at maqam.gds.haj.gov.sa.

The Visit Saudi platform provides e-services, including the issuance of electronic visas and purchasing of Umrah bundles. The service is available at visitsaudi.com/ar.

Holders of on-arrival visas, among countries eligible for electronic visas, as well as US, UK and Schengen visa holders, can carry out Umrah rituals with ease, provided that the visas are used for one time only and carry the issuing country’s seal.

Family visit and personal visit visa holders can also perform the pilgrimage by booking an appointment through the Eatmarna application during their visits to relatives and friends in the Kingdom, and by applying to the Unified National Visa Platform.

To carry out Umrah rituals, visitors must have comprehensive medical insurance that covers — among other things — the treatment costs of COVID-19, personal incidents resulting in death and disability, and flight delays or cancellations.