Kenya joins Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition

The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42. (Supplied)
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The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42. (Supplied)
The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42. (Supplied)
2 / 4
The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42. (Supplied)
The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42. (Supplied)
3 / 4
The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42. (Supplied)
The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42. (Supplied)
4 / 4
The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42. (Supplied)
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Updated 01 September 2022

Kenya joins Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition

Kenya joins Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition
  • Coalition chief calls Nairobi’s decision ‘a positive step’ to combat regional violence

RIYADH: The Islamic Military Counter Terrorism Coalition on Thursday announced that Kenya had joined as a member state, increasing the number since its inception to 42.

Following the announcement, the Kenyan flag was flown at the headquarters of the coalition next to the other 41 flags, where the ceremony was held in the presence of Kenyan Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Peter Nicholas Ojigo and a delegation from the Kenyan Embassy in Riyadh.

IMCTC Secretary-General Maj. Gen. Mohammed bin Saeed Al-Moghedi said Kenya’s membership is a positive step by Nairobi, and expresses the importance of international participation in combating terrorism and extremist violence.

Al-Moghedi stressed that Kenya — with its various religious and cultural components and its strategic East African location — will play a big role as an IMCTC member, with its effective record combating terrorism.

IMCTC member states work to coordinate, unify and reinforce efforts to combat the financing and supporting of terrorism.

In December 2015, Saudi Arabia announced the formation of the coalition to form a unified pan-Islamic front against extremist violence.

The chiefs of staff from various Islamic countries met in Riyadh in March 2016 and affirmed their determination to fight terrorism jointly according to their capabilities within the IMCTC framework, as per its policies and procedures, without compromising the sovereignty of member states.

In 2017, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman inaugurated the first meeting of the coalition under the theme “Allied Against Terrorism.”

The meeting stressed that terrorism represents a continued and growing threat to local and global peace and stability, and voiced support for IMCTC members to coordinate efforts to wipe out terrorism ideologically, financially and militarily.


Saudi Arabia and China to prioritize relations - Joint statement

Saudi Arabia and China to prioritize relations - Joint statement
Updated 15 sec ago

Saudi Arabia and China to prioritize relations - Joint statement

Saudi Arabia and China to prioritize relations - Joint statement

Saudi Arabia and China vowed to prioritize relations as part of their foreign policy and setting a model of cooperation and solidarity for developing countries, according to a joint statement published at the end of Riyadh-Chinese Summit.

Both sides also reaffirmed they will continue to firmly support each other’s core interests, sovereignty and territorial integrity, according to the statement released in the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

They will also make joint efforts to defend the principle of non-interference in their internal affairs.


Saudi Arabia warns global humanitarian crisis will escalate in 2023

Saudi Arabia warns global humanitarian crisis will escalate in 2023
Updated 09 December 2022

Saudi Arabia warns global humanitarian crisis will escalate in 2023

Saudi Arabia warns global humanitarian crisis will escalate in 2023
  • Area worst affected by the escalating crisis will be the Horn of Africa, the Sahel region, the Great Lakes, Haiti and Ukraine

NEW YORK: Humanitarian needs will increase worldwide in the year ahead, Saudi aid experts warn, requiring solidarity among the international community and the continued support of donors within the UN, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Thursday.

Aqil Al-Ghamdi, the assistant supervisor general director for planning and development at the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center, also known as KSRelief, said the areas worst affected by the escalating crisis will be the Horn of Africa, the Sahel region, the Great Lakes, Haiti and Ukraine.

Their situations will get worse because of factors such as economic disparity, climate change, food shortages, rising prices of fuel and fertilizer, the COVID-19 pandemic, ebola and cholera outbreaks, all of which will have crippling effects on the humanitarian situation.

He was speaking at a high-level meeting of the donor support group for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in New York on Wednesday.

Al-Ghamdi, who chaired the meeting, said the OCHA will have to confront greater challenges in 2023, which will require a united response and the continued support of the group. He gave details of the OCHA’s strategic plan for the period 2023 to 2026, and the office’s budget for coming year. He praised the progress it has made, especially with regard to setting priorities and establishing a budget steering committee to help allocate resources based on levels of need.

Joyce Msuya, OCHA’s assistant secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and deputy emergency relief coordinator, said the office appreciates the offers by members of the donor group to mobilize their support, especially in terms of funding, in light of the economic conditions that most countries are experiencing and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. She stressed the office’s efforts to use available resources efficiently.

Julie Billings, head of strategic planning, budgeting and finance at the OCHA, discussed the office’s 2023 budget and some of the steps it is taking. She said it constantly evaluates its bureaus around the world to establish financial needs, and reduces the support to areas in which the humanitarian situation has improved so that the funding can be transferred to address priority needs elsewhere.

Al-Ghamdi, the head of the donor group and the Kingdom’s representative on it, thanked the OCHA representatives and the members of the donor group for attending the two-day meeting and their valuable contributions. He invited them to the fourth meeting of the high-level group, which is scheduled to take place in Riyadh in February, alongside the Riyadh International Humanitarian Forum.


Weather warnings issued across Saudi Arabia until Saturday

Weather warnings issued across Saudi Arabia until Saturday
Updated 09 December 2022

Weather warnings issued across Saudi Arabia until Saturday

Weather warnings issued across Saudi Arabia until Saturday

RIYADH: Authorities in Saudi Arabia on Thursday called on the public to exercise caution over the coming days as weather warnings have been issued in several regions across the Kingdom.

The General Directorate of Civil Defense chances of thunderstorms have been forecast on Friday and Saturday, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The authority warned of moderate to heavy rains and active winds in the capital Riyadh, Hail, Qassim and the Eastern Province. It also warned some areas may experience flooding.

It also said the regions of Al-Jouf, and the Northern Borders Province will be affected by moderate rains, while thunderclouds accompanied by active winds are expected to continue to form in Asir, Jazan, and Al-Baha.

The warnings were issued based on data received from the National Center of Meteorology.

The civil defense called on everyone to be wary of the severe conditions, to stay away from places that could flood and electricity poles, and to abide by the civil defense’s instructions and updates announced through media and social media outlets.


‘From the East to the East’ art exhibition in Riyadh bridges Arab and Chinese cultures

‘From the East to the East’ art exhibition in Riyadh bridges Arab and Chinese cultures
Updated 09 December 2022

‘From the East to the East’ art exhibition in Riyadh bridges Arab and Chinese cultures

‘From the East to the East’ art exhibition in Riyadh bridges Arab and Chinese cultures
  • Palace of Culture event features 40 works by Arab artists sharing their impressions of China
  • Arab-Chinese music and dance fusion and a live art show dubbed a “symbol of our unity”

RIYADH: While bolstering trade ties and strategic cooperation during President Xi Jinping’s three-day visit to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and China have also prioritized cross-cultural exchange to help cement the diplomatic relationship.

On the sidelines of Xi’s visit, an event titled “From the East to the East and the Selected Exhibition of Famous Arab Artists Visiting China” was held in the Palace of Culture to showcase the work of Arab and Chinese artists and musicians. 

Sponsored by the Saudi Ministry of Culture, the Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism, and the Arab League, in cooperation with the Saudi Ministry of Information, the event featured a traditional Ardah performance and a Chinese dance routine. 

With the faint sounds of the Chinese musical strings of the zheng, the Arabic version of the string instrument, the qanun, and the oud, a trio of Saudi and Chinese performers created a unique fusion of sounds. 

Since 2009, more than 170 well-known artists from 21 Arab countries have been invited to visit the People’s Republic by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China. The artists turned what they saw, felt and thought into more than 500 paintings, sculptures and ceramic works.

The exhibition features 40 of these works by an assortment of Saudi, Libyan, Algerian, Palestinian, Egypian, Bahraini, Iraqi and Jordanian artists alongside works by Chinese artist who visited Arab countries. 

It features Chinese paintings of Manama and Amman, and one of an Egyptian man with a camel, decorated with colorful strings and bells, against the iconic backdrop of the Pyramids of Giza.

Influences of the ancient Silk Road were also evident in several of the artworks and large screens covering the walls showing Chinese and Arabic calligraphy and heritage objects. 

The exhibition was organized by Bauhinia Culture Holdings Limited, executed by China Arts and Entertainment Group Ltd., supported by the China Artists Association.

A live art show also took place, highlighting the distinctive architecture of the Great Wall of China and Diriya’s Salwa Palace. 

“I found similarities in the way rock and stone was used here and in my country,” Chinese painter Wang Haikun told Arab News. 

“These similarities prompted me to apply it to my side of the mural as a symbol of our unity.”
 


Saudi forum marks International Anti-Corruption Day

Saudi forum marks International Anti-Corruption Day
Updated 09 December 2022

Saudi forum marks International Anti-Corruption Day

Saudi forum marks International Anti-Corruption Day

JEDDAH: The 11th International Anti-Corruption Day Forum, organized by the Oversight and Anti-Corruption Authority (Nazaha), has concluded with the participation of several experts from the government and private sectors.

Titled “Corruption Risks Management in the Public Sector: Experiences, Challenges and Solutions,” the forum was inaugurated by Bandar AbalKhail, Nazaha’s vice president for protecting integrity, supervisor of oversight, investigation and combating corruption.

The official said that marking International Anti-Corruption Day was based on the Kingdom’s keenness to raise awareness against the threat of corruption, adding that efforts to eliminate it are being undertaken through cooperation at all levels.

He said: “The directives of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman stress that corruption is the cause of many great problems, and what matters to us today is to be at the forefront of countries in combating corruption and to achieve the lowest rates of corruption globally.

“This approach is consistent with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, which confirms that transparency and combating corruption is its main pillar to strengthen the principles of accountability in the public and private sectors, and to never tolerate corruption at all levels.”