Umrah pilgrims laud King Salman program

Umrah pilgrims laud King Salman program
The group included 250 prominent Muslims from 16 countries. (SPA)
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Updated 26 February 2024
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Umrah pilgrims laud King Salman program

Umrah pilgrims laud King Salman program
  • Third group of beneficiaries left Makkah to travel home
  • 250 prominent Muslims from 65 countries part of group

RIYADH: The third group of beneficiaries of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques’ Guests Program for Hajj and Umrah, supervised by the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, have lauded the country’s leadership for helping them to perform their rituals in Makkah.

The participants have now returned home after completing Umrah and visiting the Prophet’s Mosque, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Monday.

The group included 250 prominent Muslims from 16 countries: Jordan, Iraq, Tunisia, Egypt, Lebanon, Algeria, Morocco, Nigeria, South Africa, Chad, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Kenya, Senegal, Uganda and Mauritania.

They thanked King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the ministry for providing them with quality services during their visit.

During their stay, they visited Quba Mosque, the Martyrs of Uhud Cemetery, Jabal Ar-Rumat (Hill of Archers), Hira Cultural District, the Cave of Hira, and other historical and cultural sites across the two holy cities.

The guests visited the Revelation Exhibition at the Hira Cultural District in Makkah, which featured models of the Cave of Hira and a screen narrating the story of how Prophet Muhammad received revelation.

They said the exhibition was indicative of the Kingdom’s efforts to enrich visitors’ religious and cultural experiences, as well as its care for Islam and Muslims.


Saudi foreign minister praises China’s support for Gaza ceasefire efforts

Saudi foreign minister praises China’s support for Gaza ceasefire efforts
Updated 30 May 2024
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Saudi foreign minister praises China’s support for Gaza ceasefire efforts

Saudi foreign minister praises China’s support for Gaza ceasefire efforts
  • Prince Faisal reiterated calls for an immediate and permanent ceasefire in Gaza and an uninterrupted flow of aid into the enclave

BEIJING: Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan on Thursday praised China’s support for efforts to end the war on Gaza and push for the two-state solution.

In his address at the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum in Beijing, Prince Faisal reiterated calls for an immediate and permanent ceasefire in Gaza and an uninterrupted flow of aid into the enclave.

He called for deeper cooperation to establish a reliable and irreversible path to the two-state solution, noting that constant dialogue is crucial for achieving regional peace.

He rejected foreign interference in the Middle East and called for efforts to prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction in the region.

China hosted a summit on Thursday focusing on the Israel-Hamas war in which Chinese President Xi Jinping promised more humanitarian aid in Gaza and called for an international peace conference.

The summit, attended by heads of state from Egypt, the UAE, Bahrain and Tunisia among others, was set to address China’s expanding trade ties and security concerns related to the Israel-Hamas war.


KSrelief extends training, water, health projects in Yemen

KSrelief extends training, water, health projects in Yemen
Updated 30 May 2024
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KSrelief extends training, water, health projects in Yemen

KSrelief extends training, water, health projects in Yemen

RIYADH: The Kingdom’s aid agency KSrelief is extending its training, food and health projects for vulnerable people in Yemen, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday.

In Taiz and the Hadramout governorate, the agency launched a life-skills program for orphans and women, which including sewing, managing businesses, and maintaining mobile phones.

In Aden, KSrelief concluded a training program on community cohesion in cooperation with the UN Development Programme, covering peace committees, conflict resolution and mediation.

In addition, the aid agency distributed 634 food parcels to 4,438 individuals in Aden.

In Hodeidah, 2,600 personal hygiene bags were delivered to displaced people in the Al-Jisha and Bani Jaber camps.

KSrelief also signed a deal with a civil society organization in Taiz to dig a well in the area that would benefit 3,150 individuals.

In Socotra governorate, KSrelief signed a pact with a civil society organization to construct a tank that would supply clean water to villages.


Saudi Railways announces increased seating capacity of Haramain High-Speed Train for Hajj season

Saudi Railways announces increased seating capacity of Haramain High-Speed Train for Hajj season
Updated 30 May 2024
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Saudi Railways announces increased seating capacity of Haramain High-Speed Train for Hajj season

Saudi Railways announces increased seating capacity of Haramain High-Speed Train for Hajj season

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia Railways on Wednesday announced the readiness of the Haramain High-Speed Railway to receive pilgrims for this year’s Hajj season and said it has increased the number of available seats by about 100,000.

SAR revealed its operational plan for the season at its five stations linking Makkah to Madinah, bringing the total number of seats to 1.6 million, up from more than a 1.3 million seating capacity last year, the Saudi Press Agency reported.
The 453-kilometer railway passes through the main Jeddah station in the Sulaymaniyah district, King Abdulaziz Airport station in Jeddah, and King Abdullah Economic City. 
“This expansion also considers the addition of more than 430 new trips to last year’s trips, raising the number of trips scheduled in the operational plan for this year to more than 3,800” from May 9 to June 25, while the numbers of trips on peak days will be 126, SPA said.
The Haramain High-Speed Railway train ranks among the 10 fastest electric trains globally. It reaches 300 km per hour, and operates a fleet of 35 trains, with a capacity of 417 seats per train. It functions based on an environment-friendly system and zero carbon emissions, and plays an important role in preserving roads’ infrastructure by reducing road traffic.


Islamic Ministry unites volunteers to serve pilgrims

Islamic Ministry unites volunteers to serve pilgrims
Updated 29 May 2024
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Islamic Ministry unites volunteers to serve pilgrims

Islamic Ministry unites volunteers to serve pilgrims
  • The initiative is part of the ministry’s ongoing efforts to promote a culture of volunteering within communities

MAKKAH: Almost 5,000 people are set to volunteer for programs launched by the Makkah arm of the Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Dawah and Guidance, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday.

The branch has launched 247 opportunities via its volunteering platform to coincide with the start of the Hajj season. These include distributing more than 235,000 water bottles at 3,850 mosques, providing umbrellas to pilgrims for protection against the sun, distributing booklets and providing meals.

The initiative is part of the ministry’s ongoing efforts to promote a culture of volunteering within communities.

Earlier, the Presidency of Religious Affairs at the Grand Mosque and the Prophet’s Mosque launched its operational plan for Hajj, promoting voluntary and humanitarian work.

It recognizes the Two Holy Mosques as attractive environments for such efforts, based on religious and Saudi values that highlight the importance of generosity and hospitality.


Al-Jubeir meets US, Costa Rica officials in Riyadh

Al-Jubeir meets US, Costa Rica officials in Riyadh
Updated 29 May 2024
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Al-Jubeir meets US, Costa Rica officials in Riyadh

Al-Jubeir meets US, Costa Rica officials in Riyadh

Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and climate envoy Adel Al-Jubeir met Robert Karem, national security adviser to US Senator Mitch McConnell, on Wednesday in Riyadh.

In a separate meeting, Al-Jubeir met Costa Rica’s non-resident ambassador to the Kingdom, Francisco Chacon Hernandez.

The talks in both meetings centered on bilateral relations as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest.