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Arab, Muslim leaders strongly condemn terror attack in Qatif

Author: 
Arab News
Sat, 2017-07-08 06:00
ID: 
1499460131085983200

JEDDAH: Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, the UAE and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) condemned the terror attack on security personnel in Qatif, which left one dead and others injured.
King Salman received a cable of condolences from Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber, emir of Kuwait, in which he expressed his country strong condemnation of the terrorist attack that targeted a security patrol with an explosive projectile in Al-Musawara district in Qatif municipality, resulting in the martyrdom of a security man and the injury of his colleagues.
In his cable, the emir reiterated his country’s stand with the Kingdom and its support for all measures being taken to confront terrorism and preserve its security.
He also renewed Kuwait’s rejection of terrorism in all its forms.
King Salman received cables of condolences from Kuwait’s Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, and Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah.
They expressed their sincere sympathies with the leadership and people of Saudi Arabia.
Oman also condemned the terrorist attack. A statement by the Foreign Ministry affirmed the sultanate’s solidarity with the Kingdom against the scourge of violence and terrorism.
The Bahraini Foreign Ministry strongly condemned the attack. It stressed Bahrain’s stance with Saudi Arabia in all actions and measures taken to maintain its security, stressing the need for concerted international efforts at all levels to eradicate this serious scourge that threatens all countries.
It expressed sincere condolences to the government, people and families of the martyr, wishing a speedy recovery to all who were injured.
The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation strongly condemned this terror attack stressing the UAE’s firm rejection of terrorism in all its forms, and calling for international solidarity in confronting this phenomenon that threatens international security.
Yousef bin Ahmed Al-Othaimeen, secretary-general of the OIC, strongly denounced such repeated terrorist acts that target security personnel while on duty preserving public security and order.
He confirmed the support of the organization for the measures the Kingdom is taking to combat terrorism and wits sources.

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Preparations underway to launch Souq Okaz on Wednesday

Author: MOHAMMED AL-SULAMISat, 2017-07-08 05:49ID: 1499471406276425900JEDDAH: Intensive preparations are in full swing to ready all sites, services and other facilities at Souq Okaz in Taif for the official launch this Wednesday.The 11th seas…


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Saudi clinics treat 3,464 Syrians at Zaatari camp

Author: Arab NewsSat, 2017-07-08 05:45ID: 1499471161566416900JEDDAH: Specialized Saudi Clinics treated 3,464 Syrian refugees in Zaatari camp in northern Jordan during their 235th working week.The regional director of the Saudi National Campai…


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Jeddah Summer Festival expected to attract over 1m visitors

Author: 
Fouzia Khan
Sat, 2017-07-08 05:43
ID: 
1499471003526407600

JEDDAH: Organizers of this year’s Jeddah Summer Festival, which opens on July 9 and continues for a month, expect more than 1 million visitors.
The opening of the festival will take place at Jungle Land Theme Park in Marsal Village on Al-Haramain Road.
Mazen bin Mohammed Batterjee, vice president of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), said that 50,000 visitors are expected per day.
He said this year, there is a new version of the festival, which is the largest tourism and marketing annual event in Jeddah in conjunction with the summer holidays.
Tourism is an important pillar that contributes to diversifying sources of income and enhances Jeddah’s status on the tourist map, both locally and regionally, he explained.
The festival will include tourism, entertainment, cultural programs, competitions, sports, visual shows, plays for children and families, folkloric shows and dance, a Chinese circus and cultural plays organized by the Saudi Arabian Society for Culture and Arts (SASCA) at their premises.
Hassan bin Ibrahim Dahlan, the secretary-general of the JCCI, said this year the festival will bring hundreds of major activities and will gives away thousands of gifts in addition to the shopping experience. Prizes will amount to SR2 million ($533,305), including four luxury cars.

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KSRelief inspects progress against malnutrition in Shabwa

Author: 
ARAB NEWS
Sat, 2017-07-08 03:00
ID: 
1499460131085982900

JEDDAH: A team from the King Salman Center for Relief and Humanitarian Aid (KSRelief) has visited Nasab in Yemen’s Shabwa governorate to inspect progress made in the project to confront malnutrition.
The number of children under 5 years of age diagnosed with malnutrition in the targeted health facilities in Shabwa is 1,941, and the number of children under 5 years treated for acute malnutrition is 118.
The number of pregnant and lactating mothers with acute malnutrition treated at the health facilities in Nasab is 258.
KSRelief has provided insecticides and spraying machines to control desert locusts in order to prevent epidemics and maintain food security in the governorates of Hadramaut, Shabwa, Abyan, Dhala, Marib, Jawf and Mahra, in coordination with the Saudi Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture and the Yemeni High Relief Committee, represented by the Yemeni Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation.
KSRelief has supported water and environmental sanitation services, and provided drinking water and sanitation for vulnerable and displaced people in Yemen. The Center also recently distributed food aid in Abyan.
In a statement to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Abyan Gov. Abu Bakr Hussein lauded the Kingdom’s pivotal role in providing aid, as represented by KSRelief.

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Saudi Arabia accuses Qatar of using Twitter to stoke dissent

Author: 
MOHAMMED AL-SULAMI
Fri, 2017-07-07 03:00
ID: 
1499385798068233300

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia, which is part of the Anti-Terror Quartet (ATQ), on Thursday accused Doha of being behind over 23,000 Twitter accounts trying to stoke dissent in Saudi Arabia.
“We found over 23,000 Twitter accounts driven by Qatar, some of them linked to accounts calling for ‘revolution’ in Saudi Arabia,” Information Minister Awwad Saleh Al-Awwad told AFP during a visit to Paris.
They included the @mujtahidd account, which claims to have the inside track on the Saudi royal household and has over 1.8 million followers, he said.
The account, which has backed Qatar, claimed that Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the UAE had set out to overthrow Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani but decided against it after coming under pressure from the US, an ally of both Riyadh and Doha.
Al-Awwad accused a London-based Saudi dissident, Saad Al-Faqih, of being behind the account, “together with Qatar.”
Some of the accounts identified by Riyadh as being Qatari proxies were behind calls for protests by the jobless on April 21, he said.
According to one study, 32 percent of the fake accounts come from Qatar, 28 percent from Lebanon, 24 percent from Turkey and 12 percent from Iraq.
The study found links, in the forms of re-tweets and likes, between these accounts and others that call for revolution, stir public opinion or spread rumors about Saudi Arabia, said Saud Al-Qahtani, adviser to the Saudi Royal Court and general supervisor of the Center for Studies and Information Affairs.
Al-Qahtani added that 82 percent of these accounts use false pseudonyms, and about 18 percent of the others cannot be verified.
Recently, the Gulf Association for Rights and Freedoms appealed to two international rights organizations for an urgent intervention over Qatar’s move to ban expat workers taking their annual leave.
The association has sent an “urgent appeal” to the International Labour Organization and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva, asking them to “intervene urgently regarding the grave violation” the Qatari government is committing against citizens and expats, according to the UAE state news agency WAM.
Approximately 2.2 million expats work in Qatar, the majority from countries in Asia.
The ban on Qatari nationals and expat workers taking annual leave may endanger their working conditions, according to Mohammed Hayef, the rights association’s spokesperson.
Hayef warned that such a decision is likely to increase rates of serious and fatal work accidents, “due to depriving workers and placing them under harsh working conditions and physical, psychological and social pressures.”
Qatar’s decision “contradicts the conventions of the International Labour Organization and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and violates the basic human right to enjoy annual leave,” Hayef said.
“By this unjust decision, Qatar has violated the most important universal and humanitarian provision in the International Labour Organization’s constitution,” which clearly condemns working conditions “involving injustice, hardship and privation to large numbers of people as to produce unrest so great that the peace and harmony of the world are imperilled.”
Hayef referred to construction workers on the 2022 FIFA World Cup project, who are also negatively affected by the ban.
According to a previous report, more than 1,200 construction workers died while building stadiums for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
“One human rights agency estimates more than 4,000 construction workers will die building World Cup-related infrastructure,” the previous report said.

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Record temperature in central, eastern parts of Kingdom

Author: ARAB NEWSFri, 2017-07-07 04:24ID: 1499385798048233000JEDDAH: The temperature in central and eastern parts of the Kingdom has reached 53 degrees Celsius for the first time. Surpassing 50 degrees is rare; in Jeddah, the temperature reac…


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New expat fee includes newborns

Author: 
ARAB NEWS
Fri, 2017-07-07 04:27
ID: 
1499385798078233800

JEDDAH: The Passport Department on Wednesday said it has completed modifications to its electronic portal to cope with the new requirement that private-sector, non-Saudi residents pay a fee for each of their dependents and escorts (those under the resident’s sponsorship, but not a wife or son younger than 18).
It said the fee include newborns, and is required to be paid when requesting visa and residency services online.
The monthly fee is SR100 ($26.67) in 2017, SR200 in 2018, SR300 in 2019 and SR400 in 2020.
The fee came into effect on July 1, and is aimed at increasing state revenues to offset the impact of low oil prices.
The Passport Department said the fee should be paid before renewal of a residency permit or issuance of an exit/re-entry visa for expat workers of all nationalities.

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Saudi education venture Noon attends US investment conference

Author: 
MOHAMMED RASOOLDEEN
Fri, 2017-07-07 04:22
ID: 
1499385798028232500

RIYADH: The Noon Educational Platform, supported by the King Abdul Aziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), has become the first Saudi or Arab entity to participate in the ASU+GSV conference on investment in education technology, held recently in the US.
Chief Executive Mohammed Al-Dhelaan said that Noon was the only Arab body invited to speak to investors from all over the world at the annual conference.
He praised the role of KACST’s Badir Program in supporting and facilitating the participation of the Noon in this important conference.
The Noon Educational Platform — which specializes in social learning, artificial intelligence and the knowledge revolution — was given the opportunity to showcase its work and business insights to a host of potential investors and technology enthusiasts from Silicon Valley.
“Our participation in this conference comes after we recently concluded a successful investment tour at Noon Educational Platform which was (attended) by several local and regional investors, led by Mudassir Sheikha, co-founder and CEO of Careem, the cab-booking (service) in the Middle East and North Africa,” said Al-Dhelaan.
With more than 900,000 students enrolled in Noon, the educational platform aims to revolutionize the private-tutoring market and improve the education of millions in the Arab world. Noon aims to reformulate the concept of private tutoring by combining learning with pleasure and artificial intelligence.
Through Noon, a high school student is just a click of a button away from getting a private tutor on his phone, whenever needed, at a cost of about 70 percent less than when booked in person.
Noon is one of the most prominent projects of the Badir Program at KACST.

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