Hungary plans halal slaughterhouses

Updated 28 June 2015

Hungary plans halal slaughterhouses

RIYADH: Hungary is seeking to set up halal slaughterhouses so that it can sell livestock in the Saudi market.
Saudi businesspeople should invest in and oversee these facilities, said Levente Magyar, minister of state for economic diplomacy at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. He said Hungary has a $130 billion food products market.
“We would like to see Saudi-financed slaughterhouses in Hungary for lamb and other animals that can be sold on Saudi markets. They will oversee operations to guarantee impeccable, quality halal procedures,” Magyar told Arab News during a recent visit.
He said the Hungarian agricultural and food sectors are lucrative because they cover 70 percent of the country’s area. This includes animal husbandry and growing vegetables, fruit and grains.
He said Hungary wants to be part of the growth underway in the Kingdom. “We will not miss the opportunity to develop close cooperation. The political foundation has been laid and now is the time for businesses to deliver and capitalize on these assets.”
Magyar underlined Hungary’s commitment to engage with the Arab world and the Gulf region, to identify mutually beneficial economic partnerships. He said the Hungarian government has identified about 12 areas where it can contribute exclusively.
“So the reason I came this time is to follow up on the extremely constructive, deep rooted and excellent political relationship within the framework of cooperation,” he said. “I want the Saudi business community to understand that we are at their service and can present them with specific offers.”
Referring to his meeting with Prince Alwaleed bin Talal during his visit, he said: “He knows how much a cup of coffee costs downtown. He works in the world with an open eye and always looks at the bills when he is in a restaurant. Obviously he is interested from the financial point of view and found out that Hungary has very competitive pricing compared to other European countries.”
He said Prince Alwaleed has a deep knowledge of Hungary and strong personal relations with the Hungarian prime minister. “The important message he shared is about a great gap in our marketing activities here in Saudi Arabia. Although Saudis have a positive attitude toward Hungary, they don’t know much about it,” he said.
He said both sides agreed that “we should come up with a plan on how to better advertise Hungary to Saudi Arabia in various local media and on different platforms, so that Saudis become acquainted with our country.”
“From what I have seen today, Prince Alwaleed is very supportive of the Saudi-Hungarian relationship and wants to promote our image here. He even proposed that his own media empire participates in such a campaign.”
On the second Arab-Hungarian Business Forum meeting held in Riyadh last year, the minister said it was an initiative of the Hungarian government in the form of an open framework policy, which is based on the realization and conviction that the market here, including the Arab and Gulf markets, are undiscovered territory for Hungary.
He said that following the collapse of communism in Hungary, most of their attention was focused toward the West.
“We now have enough energy and capacity to concentrate on these emerging and extremely fast-developing markets.”
He said they have decided to tighten business-to-business and political links with the Arab world.
“The prime minister was here among world dignitaries to attend the funeral of the late king,” he said.


Organization of Islamic Cooperation to adopt Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam

Updated 28 February 2020

Organization of Islamic Cooperation to adopt Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam

  • OIC secretary-general notes that the organization continues to condemn the ideological rhetoric adopted by terrorist groups

JEDDAH: Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Dr. Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen announced on Wednesday that the OIC will adopt the Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam (CDHRI) after it is revised in accordance with international human-rights standards. The foreign ministers of the OIC member states are expected to approve the CDHRI at their meeting in Niamey, Niger in April.

 Al-Othaimeen was speaking at the 43rd session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC), held in Geneva on Wednesday, where he highlighted some of the efforts the OIC has made to fight racism and xenophobia — including Islamophobia — claiming that they are the result of “intellectual and political resistance to cultural pluralism.”

He said the OIC, in cooperation with its partners, has prepared “a comprehensive and consensual approach to address incitement to hatred, discrimination and violence on the basis of religion.”

Al-Othaimeen’s speech, which was delivered on his behalf by OIC Geneva Permanent Representative Nassima Baghli, stressed that terrorism, including religious extremism, is a major source of concern for the international community. He pointed out that the OIC continues to condemn the ideological rhetoric adopted by terrorist groups and has established the Sawt Al-Hikma (Voice of Wisdom) Center, which focuses on addressing the ideological rhetoric of extremists.

His speech also reviewed the most common human-rights violations suffered by Muslims, referring to the detailed documentation from the UN’s own human rights bodies and the OIC of discrimination and violence against the Rohingya Muslims.

Al-Othaimeen explained that America’s actions in Palestine in recent months required the OIC to stress that any peace initiative between Israel and Palestine must be consistent with legitimate rights, foremost among which is the right to self-determination.

He also stressed the OIC’s support for Kashmiris in their pursuit of their legitimate right to self-determination in accordance with international resolutions and highlighted the OIC’s condemnation of Armenia’s continued occupation of Nagorno-Karabakh and seven regions bordering Azerbaijan.