Archeological team to restore 'The Stone of Antar'

Updated 04 March 2013

Archeological team to restore 'The Stone of Antar'

The Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities (SCTA) has sent a specialist team an area north of Uyun Al Jawa District to restore the Stone of Antar ibn Shaddad. Ibn Shaddad, commonly known as Antar, was a renowned Arabian hero and poet in the period before Islam. Antar, it is believed, used to meet his lover Abla, who he desired to marry, at the stone structure.
The archeological team are tasked with cleaning the graffiti using scientific methods and restoring the stone as a symbol of love and loyalty.
This procedure comes in response to the directives of Prince Faisal bin Bandar, governor of Qassim Region, who instructed officials to remove distortions found on the site.
Awad Al-Zahrani, director general of museums at the SCTA, urged residents in the region to preserve the historical sites of their country as they are national treasures.
One of Antar's poems was immortalized when it became one of the Hanged Poems. Know as Mu'allaqat, these poems were considered the best of their time. In pre-Islamic times a gathering know as Okaz Fair, held near modern day Taif, was attended by contestants who presented their odes to judges, who would select the best work. These poems were written in golden letters and hung on the walls of the Kaaba in Makkah for pilgrims to admire.


Notice setting date for Saudi international flights ‘is bogus’

Updated 12 August 2020

Notice setting date for Saudi international flights ‘is bogus’

  • Aviation chiefs issue official denial after fake circular says passengers can fly to and from Kingdom from October

RIYADH: A fake circular suggesting Saudi Arabia will resume international flights in October has been condemned as “completely baseless and fabricated” by the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA).
Rumors that international flights will shortly return have been circulating on social media in recent weeks without any official statement from GACA.
On Tuesday, the authority denied announcing the resumption of international flights and said information being circulated was fabricated.
Saudi Arabia suspended international flights from March 15 in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Since domestic flights restarted on May 31, rumors have been circulating regarding the return of international flights. On Monday, the bogus GACA circular was shared on various social media platforms suggesting flights into and out of Saudi Arabia would resume in October. It sparked a flurry of speculation.
The circular, titled “No flights till October 2020,” said: “An employee of the GACA has stated in a recent interview that all international flights to and from the Kingdom are to remain suspended till the month of October.” Quoting a GACA official, the circular said that the decision was subject to the number of coronavirus cases, which must “come down to three digits.”
GACA official spokesman Ibrahim bin Abdullah Alrwosa told Arab News the circular “is completely baseless and fabricated.”
He shared a tweet from the authority’s public relations department describing the circular as incorrect.
The civil aviation authority has previously said there is no specific date for the resumption of international flights, he added.
All international flights remain suspended until further notice.
However, exceptions have been made for humanitarian assistance and emergency cases, medical evacuation flights and repatriation of stranded citizens and expatriates wanting to return home.