Grand mufti of Saudi Arabia warns against Hajj without permit

Grand mufti of Saudi Arabia warns against Hajj without permit
The Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia Sheikh Abdulaziz Al Al-Sheikh called on all Hajj pilgrims to adhere to controls and procedures to ensure their safety. (File/SPA)
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Updated 07 June 2024
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Grand mufti of Saudi Arabia warns against Hajj without permit

Grand mufti of Saudi Arabia warns against Hajj without permit
  • Call for pilgrims to strictly adhere to security and official instructions 

RIYADH: The Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah Al-Asheikh has called on all Hajj pilgrims to strictly adhere to security and official instructions by obtaining a Hajj permit and the vaccinations required by the Ministry of Health, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Friday.

The grand mufti, who is also the chairman of the Council of Senior Scholars and head of the General Presidency for Scholarly Research and Fatwa, said that pilgrims were not allowed to go to Hajj without a permit.

He said: “The wise leadership and the state have enacted regulations and instructions aimed at facilitating and arranging the reception of pilgrims, providing them with all means of comfort, and helping them to perform rituals with ease and reassurance.

“These services require adherence to them and care for them to ensure the safety of everyone, and other purposes.”

He added that the Kingdom’s government had spared no effort in achieving its lofty goals in the service of Islam and Muslims, the Two Holy Mosques and their visitors.

He said the Kingdom’s leadership and people were honored by serving the Two Holy Mosques, but that “this requires full compliance with all official instructions received regarding organizing the Hajj, including obtaining a permit and also obtaining vaccinations.”

He urged pilgrims to invest their time during the days of Hajj in devotion to God through supplication and worship, and called on them to adhere to controls and procedures to ensure their safety and security.


Saudi FM hosts French presidential advisor for Middle East, North Africa

Saudi FM hosts French presidential advisor for Middle East, North Africa
Updated 13 July 2024
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Saudi FM hosts French presidential advisor for Middle East, North Africa

Saudi FM hosts French presidential advisor for Middle East, North Africa

RIYAD: Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan hosted Anne-Claire Legendre, the advisor to the French president for the Middle East and North Africa, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Friday.

During the meeting at the ministry on Friday, the two sides reviewed Saudi-French relations, ways to strengthen ties in various fields and the latest regional developments, particularly concerning the Gaza Strip.

The meeting was attended by Prince Saad bin Mansour Al-Saud, director general of the General Department for European Affairs at the Foreign Ministry.


Saudi hospital performs 3 successful heart transplants in less than 24 hours

Saudi hospital performs 3 successful heart transplants in less than 24 hours
Updated 13 July 2024
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Saudi hospital performs 3 successful heart transplants in less than 24 hours

Saudi hospital performs 3 successful heart transplants in less than 24 hours

RIYADH: King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Center performed three successful heart transplants in Riyadh on Thursday, state news agency SPA reported.

A nine-year-old girl was among the patients who received a successful transplant.

She was suffering from heart muscle weakness and needed a donation urgently.

A suitable donor was found for her in coordination with the UAE’s Saudi Center for Organ Transplantation and the National Program for Donation and Transplantation of Human Organs and Tissue.

The heart was transported from Abu Dhabi to Riyadh by a private aircraft that kept the organ in a stable condition and ensured it arrived safely to the patient.

A second team of medical professionals flew to Jeddah to obtain a donation for a 40-year-old man suffering from heart disease.

The final patient received his donation from Riyadh. The 41-year-old man was suffering from heart failure and was successfully operated on. 

KFSHRC affirmed its dedication to saving lives, overcoming challenges and bringing hope to patients and their families.


KSrelief distributes 1,200 food baskets in Chad

KSrelief distributes 1,200 food baskets in Chad
Updated 13 July 2024
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KSrelief distributes 1,200 food baskets in Chad

KSrelief distributes 1,200 food baskets in Chad

RIYADH: Saudi aid agency KSrelief has distributed 1,200 food parcels in the Beheira region of Chad, benefiting 7,200 people most in need, as part of a project to support food security in Chad in 2024, the state news agency SPA reported late on Friday.

The assistance is part of a series of humanitarian projects Saudi Arabia implements through KSrelief to help countries and people worldwide.


KSrelief signs agreement to support Yemen humanitarian fund

KSrelief signs agreement to support Yemen humanitarian fund
Updated 13 July 2024
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KSrelief signs agreement to support Yemen humanitarian fund

KSrelief signs agreement to support Yemen humanitarian fund

RIYADH: Saudi aid agency KSrelief signed an agreement with the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs on Thursday to support the Yemen Humanitarian Fund, state news agency SPA reported.

The aid agency committed $9 million to the cause, and the initiative is part of KSrelief’s humanitarian aid program in Yemen.

The agreement was signed via video conference by KSrelief Assistant Supervisor General of Operations and Programs Ahmed Al-Baiz and UN Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator Joyce Msuya.


Saudi authorities arrest 5 suspects in separate drug-trafficking cases

Saudi authorities arrest 5 suspects in separate drug-trafficking cases
Updated 13 July 2024
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Saudi authorities arrest 5 suspects in separate drug-trafficking cases

Saudi authorities arrest 5 suspects in separate drug-trafficking cases
  • The arrests were made in Riyadh, Al-Baha and Al-Jouf
  • Border Guards also seized 274 kg of narcotic qat plant in Jazan

RIYADH: Saudi authorities have arrested five people for drug trafficking offenses, seizing a large volume of the narcotic plant qat and hashish, plus amphetamine tablets and other restricted drugs in separate operations, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Friday.

Agents of the General Directorate of Narcotics Control arrested three Egyptian residents in Riyadh during one operation and seized 35 kilograms of hashish, 12,260 amphetamine tablets and 24,991 prescription tablets. 

In the southwestern province of Al-Baha, the narcotics directorate caught an Ethiopian national violating the Kingdom’s border security system and selling hashish. 

In the northern province of Al-Jouf, anti-narcotics control agents arrested a citizen for selling amphetamine tablets.

All five arrested suspects had been referred to the Public Prosecution, SPA said.  

In the southwestern province of Jazan, Border Guard land patrols thwarted separate attempts to smuggle qat from Yemen, including 160 kg in Al-Aridhah governorate and 114 kg in the governorate of Farasan, SPA said. No arrests were mentioned in both cases.

In one of the biggest drug hauls, anti-narcotics authorities in Riyadh region seized 4.7 million Captagon tablets with a street value of up to $117.5 million. The General Directorate of Narcotics Control said that the tablets were found hidden in a shipment of concrete blocks.

Amphetamines are largely used by young men and teenage boys across the Middle East, and the funds raised through the sale of narcotics is usually ploughed back into the drug trade while some of it find its way into organized crime and terrorism, authorities say.

Security authorities called on citizens and residents to report any information related to drug smuggling or selling to the General Directorate of Narcotics Control by calling 911 for Makkah, Riyadh, and the Eastern Regions, or 999 for the rest of the regions, or by emailing [email protected]