Saudi Arabia endorses report of Yemeni National Commission of Inquiry

Seeking global cooperation ... Saudi Ambassador to the UN in Geneva Faisal Trad.
Updated 01 October 2016

Saudi Arabia endorses report of Yemeni National Commission of Inquiry

GENEVA: Saudi Arabia has welcomed the submission of the initial report of the Yemeni National Independent Commission of Inquiry confirming that it is “In line with international standards and with a high level of seriousness. It also monitored 9,816 cases of violation of human rights of citizens in Yemen and international humanitarian law.”

Speaking at the United Nations Human Rights Council, Saudi Ambassador to the UN in Geneva Faisal Trad said Thursday: “Two years ago, the Houthi rebels along with Ali Abdullah Saleh loyalists took over the capabilities of Yemen in flagrant violation of all international laws which exposed the Yemeni people to murder and displacement. No woman or child was spared their criminal acts. In spite of the international support for the legitimate government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi and the issuance of international legitimacy resolutions calling those putschists to hand over power to the legitimate government, they are still dragging their feet and exposing the Yemeni people to more suffering.”
Trad called for the international community to back the legitimate Yemeni efforts that peacefully seek to resume the political process in accordance with Security Council Resolution 2216 and the Gulf initiative and its executive mechanism.
He also called for the need to help the Yemeni people get out of these dangerous events, so as to maintain Yemen’s security, stability and unity and the region’s security and stability as well.
Trad announced the Kingdom’s rejection of the UN High Commissioner’s call to establish an international commission of inquiry, stressing that “the work of the Yemeni National Commission of Inquiry, set up by the legitimate president of Yemen, Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, is now the most important safeguard against escaping impunity and accountability.”
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) also welcomed the report, saying in a joint speech, delivered by Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, that “The GCC does not see justification for the High Commissioner’s call for the establishment of an international commission of inquiry." The National Committee of Yemen has made great strides with regard to accountability, and called on the Human Rights Council to provide adequate support to this commission in accordance with its needs, the GCC said.
The GCC countries expressed their regret over the “indifference of the Houthi militias and Saleh’s loyalists toward the suffering of the Yemeni people of the consequences of the deteriorating humanitarian conditions, in addition to the continuing shelling and targeting of civilians. The Iran-backed Houthi militias recruit children and women, and commit atrocious violations.”
The GCC countries denounced the intentional obstruction and disruption by the rebels of peace consultations on Yemen.

Saudi Arabia’s AlUla provides a perfect ‘Corner of the Earth’ for Jamiroquai to shine

Updated 25 January 2020

Saudi Arabia’s AlUla provides a perfect ‘Corner of the Earth’ for Jamiroquai to shine

  • “I was transported into a completely different world”: Jay Kay

ALULA: British band Jamiroquai thrilled a delighted audience at Maraya Concert Hall in Saudi Arabia on Friday night during a show packed with hits.

In a first for a venue more used to hosting opera and classical concerts, the British funk/acid jazz outfit had fans dancing along to the music.

The show, at the distinctive, mirror-covered concert hall in historic AlUla, was part of the second Winter at Tantora festival. It opened with “Shake It On,” followed by the hit singles “Little L,” “Alright,” and “Space Cowboy.” By this time the crowd was well and truly warmed up, and “Use the Force” got them on their feet.

“The song seemed to resonate with everyone” Jay Kay told Arab News in an exclusive interview after the show.

During the gig, Kay dedicated the 2002 song “Corner of the Earth” to AlUla, which he described as a “magical and wonderful place, which is absolutely stunning.” The opportunity to perform there was “an honor and privilege” he added. He also thanked “Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman for his vision, and Prince Badr for making this happen and the great hospitality.”

After a further selection of singles and album tracks, the show ended on a high with a quartet of hits — “Cosmic Girl,” “Virtual Insanity,” “Canned Heat” and “Lovefoolosophy.”

Kay praised the Maraya Concert Hall as “a brilliant place to play.” He admitted that initially he was a little worried when he saw it because he was under the impression it would be an outdoor venue. However, any concerns he had were gone by the time the first sound check was done.

“I was transported into a completely different world; the acoustics were unbelievable, like being in a German concert hall,” he said. “It is obviously very well thought out and that’s what makes it so good. The sound was fabulous — I never looked at my sound guy once.”

Jamiroquai’s music videos often feature Kay in super cars, of which he owns many, and he revealed that he would love to shoot such a promo in AlUla.

“In reality, I’m desperate to get in one of the dune buggies, and would kill to have a (Ariel) Nomad and have a go in one in AlUla, where it’s supposed to be driven, for a day or five and dune bash, which is such a rare thing for us in England,” he said.

The singer also said he wants to bring his family to AlUla, which has become a hub for culture and creativity in Saudi Arabia.

“I would like to come out with my family and my youngest, who is called Talula, so hopefully we can have Talula come to AlUla, which would be wonderful,” said Kay.

He added that he was looking forward to exploring the area on Saturday, before leaving the country, but added: “I’m sure you can never have enough time to see everything there is to see.”