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Over 1 million students to sit for mid-year exams

Author: Arab NewsSun, 2017-01-15ID: 1484429235281395200RIYADH: More than 1 million general education students across Saudi Arabia, especially in intermediate and secondary schools, will today (Sunday) sit for their first semester exams.In Riy…


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US man arrested, charged in Saudi college student’s death

Author: 
AP, Reuters
Fri, 2017-01-13
ID: 
1484388051017697300

MADISON, United States: A Minnesota man with a string of domestic violence convictions was charged in the death of a Saudi college student stemming from a confrontation in northwestern Wisconsin last year, prosecutors said Friday.
Cullen Osburn, 27, of Minneapolis, was charged with felony murder and aggravated battery in the death of University of Wisconsin-Stout student Hussain Saeed Al-Nahdi, 24, in October. Authorities began speaking with Osburn soon after Al-Nahdi’s death, but he disappeared after telling police the altercation wasn’t based on race and promising to come in to talk to detectives, according to the criminal complaint.
Online court records didn’t list a defense attorney.
Dunn County District Attorney Andrea Nodolf told the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram newspaper that Osburn was arrested in Minnesota and would have to be extradited. No details of the arrest were given, and Nodolf’s office told The Associated Press she wouldn’t comment. The complaint is dated Nov. 14 but wasn’t filed until Thursday, suggesting Nodolf was waiting until Osburn was in custody. A message left with Menomonie police wasn’t immediately returned.
Al-Nahdi, from Buraidah city, was a business major at the UW campus in Menomonie.
According to the criminal complaint, police responding to a fight outside a Menomonie pizza restaurant during the early-morning hours of Oct. 30 found Al-Nahdi unconscious and bleeding from his nose and mouth. He died the next day; an autopsy determined he had suffered a skull fracture.
Osburn’s brother, Deontre Hughes, told police he saw Alnahdi and another man pushing Osburn. He said that Osburn swung at Al-Nahdi after Al-Nahdi ripped Osburn’s necklace off.
Another witness, Nina Simonette, told police she saw a man talking to Al-Nahdi, who put his hands up in the air as if to say he didn’t want a problem. The man then hit Alnahdi twice, she told police.
Detectives received a call from Osburn on Nov. 2, two days after Al-Nahdi’s death, the complaint said. Osburn said he was scared and wanted to cooperate with police but wanted an attorney with him.
“The Defendant was adamant that the altercation was not a result of anybody’s race but did not want to say anything else without a lawyer,” the complaint said.
He called police on Nov. 3 to say he would call them the following day to schedule an interview but never called back and detectives couldn’t find him.
Osburn faces up to six years in prison on each charge, with more possible time due to convictions in Minnesota, including several for domestic abuse and violating no-contact orders going back to 2008.

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KSRelief projects amount to over $680m in 33 countries

Author: 
ARAB NEWS
Sat, 2017-01-14
ID: 
1484343160714404500

JEDDAH: The King Salman Center for Relief and Humanitarian Aid (KSRelief) has provided humanitarian and relief work amounting to more than $680 million to 33 countries on four continents via 172 projects since King Salman announced its establishment in May 2016.
KSRelief provided operational programs in the field of food security; accommodation sand camp management and coordination; education; protection and early recovery programs; health and nutrition; water and environmental sanitation; emergency communications and logistic support; and coordination of humanitarian operations.
King Salman said in his opening speech at the inauguration of KSRelief that its establishment stems “from the teachings of our Islamic religion, which directs us to help the needy and maintain the life of the human being and his dignity and health, and in extension to the humanitarian role of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its universal vocation in this field.”
He said KSRelief “will be dedicated to humanitarian relief, and be a leading international center for disaster-stricken countries,” including Yemen.
The number of housing and food security projects, and programs of management and coordination of camps, amounted to 94, worth $347 million with 23.5 million beneficiaries.
The number of projects in the field of education, protection and early recovery programs was 15, worth almost $76 million with almost 4 million beneficiaries.
In the health, nutrition, water and environmental sanitation fields, KSRelief provided 54 projects worth $209 million with 25.6 million beneficiaries.
In the fields of emergency communications, logistics, support and coordination of humanitarian operations, the center devoted nine projects with a total value of almost $49 million with almost 16,000 beneficiaries.
Yemen was one of the greatest beneficiaries, where the center provided 110 projects worth a total of almost $562 million with the participation of 79 partners.
The number of projects in the field of food security, accommodation and camp coordination reached 43, covering all areas of Yemen, with a value of over $236 million and 19.6 million beneficiaries.
In the education, protection and early recovery fields, the number of projects implemented in Yemen was 15, worth $75.6 million and with almost 4 million beneficiaries.
Projects in health, nutrition, water and environmental sanitation carried out in Yemen amounted to 44, worth a total of over $201 million with 24.5 million beneficiaries.
As for logistics, support and coordination of humanitarian operations and emergency communications, the number of projects implemented in Yemen was eight, worth almost $49 million with over 15,000 beneficiaries.
KSRelief has been commended by heads of state, community leaders, and international and regional organizations working in relief and humanitarian services, in addition to visitors of the center. 

 

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Security forces ‘play major role in combating drugs’

Author: 
Arab News
Sat, 2017-01-14
ID: 
1484343982414496700

RIYADH: Security forces have a national responsibility in combating the dangerous drug scourge and creating a safe environment for Saudi youth, said Maj. Gen. Saad bin Abdullah Al-Khiliwi, director general of King Fahad Security College.
He also praised the support of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif, deputy prime minister and minister of interior, and the efforts of security forces in fighting the menace.
The official made these remarks during recent talks with Abdulilah bin Mohammed Al-Sharif, secretary-general of the National Committee for Narcotics Control, assistant director general of anti-drug preventative affairs and chairman of Nebras.
The meeting took place at the committee’s headquarters in Riyadh.
Al-Sharif gave a detailed presentation to the delegation led by Al-Khiliwi on several measures being taken by authorities in combating the illegal narcotics trade.
The discussions focused on anti-narcotic operations and modern methods of drug smuggling.
Al-Khiliwi praised the services of Nebras and its awareness programs and expressed support for the project’s success.
For his part, Al-Sharif praised the efforts of security officials, especially the college staff.
He said that an agreement was signed between the college and the general secretariat of the National Committee for Narcotics Control to train the personnel involved in the field of drug prevention and control.
Al-Sharif also praised the efforts of all security and customs personnel for the successes achieved in thwarting drug smuggling operations and seizing large amounts of banned substances.
More than 270 million Captagon pills and 114 tons of hashish have been seized in the past 40 months, he said.
He said Nebras is the embodiment of the state’s keenness to combat this scourge and includes eight programs being implemented throughout Saudi Arabia.
Al-Sharif praised Al-Khiliwi’s initiatives to host a cultural forum at the college to promote awareness about the dangers of drugs.
Al-Sharif also presented a number of scientific publications from Nebras that contain research reports, a scientific curriculum and international experiences in this field.

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Top Irish minister set for Saudi trade talks

Author: 
MOHAMMED RASOOLDEEN
Sat, 2017-01-14
ID: 
1484343982374496100

RIYADH: A senior minister from Ireland is set to visit Saudi Arabia next month to boost trade and investment ties with the Kingdom, said Irish Ambassador Tony Cotter.
He made the announcement during a recent meeting in Riyadh with Saud Al-Meshari, secretary-general of the Council of Saudi Chambers.
The embassy will coordinate with the council to make arrangements for the visit of Michael Creed, Irish minister for agriculture, food and the marine, in February so that it will prove beneficial to both parties, said Cotter.
It is a great honor to be asked to represent Ireland in Saudi Arabia, the envoy said in an earlier statement.
“I am particularly pleased to have been appointed to represent Ireland in Saudi Arabia (with secondary accreditation for Bahrain, Iraq, Oman and Yemen),” he added.
He said Saudi Arabia is a very important country globally, in both political and economic terms.
“Saudi Arabia is the only Arab member of the G20. There is a longstanding and positive relationship between Ireland and Saudi Arabia,” Cotter said.
Such frequent exchange of visits between the two countries would help promote economic cooperation, Al-Meshari said.
The upcoming ministerial visit will boost bilateral relations in several fields, he said.
Saudi Vision 2030 is promoting a conducive environment for foreign investors, Al-Meshari said.

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Saudi Arabia to outline renewable energy strategy at Abu Dhabi forum

Author: 
RASHID HASSAN
Sat, 2017-01-14
ID: 
1484343982334495800

RIYADH: King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy (KACARE) is participating in the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) general assembly, representing Saudi Arabia at its seventh session in Abu Dhabi (Jan. 14-15) for widespread and sustainable use of renewable energy.
KACARE Vice President Waleed Husain Abu Al-Faraj is heading the Saudi delegation at the session, which coincides with the ongoing Abu Dhabi Week for Sustainability (Jan. 12 to 21).
Saudi Arabia, a member of IRENA since 2012, has been taking part in a number of meetings and its key projects include global sources for renewable energy.
KACARE also took part in the World Future Energy Summit, which falls within the activities of Abu Dhabi Week for Sustainability.
The IRENA assembly, which designated Italy as president for this session, and the Dominican Republic, Indonesia, Jordan, and Morocco as vice presidents, will feature a number of strategic and programmatic discussions around the central themes of the agency’s work and mandate.
These are designed to promote an exchange of information and best practices among members and experts, in support of efforts to increase the uptake of renewable energy, taking advantage of the annual sessions of the assembly as the global cooperation platform in this field.
The first day of the session included a discussion on “Enabling the private sector to accelerate renewable energy deployment,” and a ministerial round table discussion “Toward an economy fueled by renewable energy: Innovation for the next stage of the power sector transformation.”
The second day will feature a ministerial round table on “Catalyzing off-grid renewable energy deployment: Toward universal electricity access and the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”
Notably, Saudi Arabia, in view of Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program 2020 (NTP 2020), is working on renewable energy, which is generated from natural resources such as sunlight, wind, rain, tides and geothermal heat.
KACARE has created a number of initiatives and is working closely with the Ministry of Transportation, the Saudi Electricity Company, the Saudi Wildlife Authority and the Directorate General of Military Survey on an atlas of renewable energy.
It is also working on projects in partnership with other sectors such as the General Organization for Saltwater Desalination to process water using solar energy technologies and thermal and wind power.
KACARE is also working with the Ministry of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources and other key partners toward its renewable energy program as per the adopted work-plan and programs under the National Transformation Program (NTP) 2020.
In an initiative toward achieving a sustainable energy mix through a renewable energy program under Vision 2030, KACARE picked bright engineering graduates and sent them to South Korea and France last year for training.
IRENA, an international organization to promote the use of renewable energy sources around the world, was founded on Jan. 26, 2009 in the German city of Bonn and its general secretariat is headquartered in Abu Dhabi with 150 countries as members so far, while 27 others are in the process of accession.
The agency seeks to become the main driving force in encouraging states to shift toward a more widespread and sustainable use of renewable energy on a global scale.

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Haya Jeddah shopping festival to draw 1 million visitors

Author: 
Fouzia Khan
Sat, 2017-01-14
ID: 
1484343500224437300

JEDDAH: Exciting activities and great discounts on consumer products are being lined up for Haya Jeddah, the 38th annual shopping festival opening on Jan. 26.
As the festival coincides with the spring vacation at schools, organizers are expecting more than 1 million visitors, especially from the Gulf region. 
The Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI) is organizing the 30-day event with the support of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage and King Abdul Aziz International Airport.
Haya Jeddah, considered the largest shopping festival in Saudi Arabia, promotes the city’s position as a welcoming and accessible family destination.
A diverse range of retail stores at famous malls in Jeddah will offer unbeatable bargains and promotions during the festival, said Hassan bin Ibrahim Dahlan, secretary-general of the JCCI.
The organizing committee is keen to ensure that the festival period coincides with major tourist activities taking place in Jeddah, he said.
Shopping malls, trade centers and shops are being invited to participate in a massive campaign of promotions and gifts during the spring vacation, the JCCI official added.
He expressed confidence that concerted efforts of all public and private entities would contribute to the success of the festival.
A dedicated website and social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube will be launched soon to promote the festival, he said.
More details will be announced at a press conference to be held soon, said Dahlan.
He urged all major shopping centers, shops, hotels and restaurants to join the festival and participate in raffle draws and promotions.
A wide range of exciting programs will take place at major shopping centers, parks and on the Red Sea coast.
Sponsorship opportunities are available for trade centers, restaurants, hotels, furnished apartments, malls and shops to join the festival. Sponsors’ names will be displayed on the campaign posters.
He said that the JCCI is regulating the strategic objectives of business owners, which include the development of tourism in Jeddah.
Jeddah has a history of more than 3,000 years. But its modern face now presents a picture of the latest commercial centers and markets in the region, he said. The corniche development program will also promote tourism and entertainment, said Dahlan.

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Life-saving health program gains ground

Author: 
MOHAMMED RASOOLDEEN
Sat, 2017-01-14
ID: 
1484343500204437000

RIYADH: The Health Ministry’s referral program Ehalati, introduced last year, is fast gaining popularity among both patients and physicians, according to an official.
The Ehalati program provides convenient medical services to patients, saving time on traveling to various facilities for treatment.
It also promotes efficient coordination between the ministry’s headquarters and health affairs directorates spread across Saudi Arabia.
More than 26,000 patients benefited from the program last month. It also saved the lives of at least 712 people, said the official.
Health teams also provided specialized medical services during the same period to 6,391 emergency cases. The number of inpatient cases was 4,609 and the cases referred to outpatient clinics amounted to 14,355.
The program takes care of the logistics needed in referring a patient from one medical facility to another.
In addition, it provides an archiving and statistical system, storing vital data about the referred patients in Saudi hospitals.
The program reduces the need to move a patient between hospitals by allowing physicians to receive counseling at various facilities to study his or her status.

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Job fairs in Riyadh and Jeddah to recruit more Bangladeshi workers

Author: 
MOHAMMED RASOOLDEEN
Sat, 2017-01-14
ID: 
1484343500264437600

RIYADH: The Bangladesh Embassy in Riyadh is making extensive arrangements to hold job fairs on Jan. 30 and Feb. 1 in Riyadh and Jeddah respectively to attract Saudi recruiting companies.
The programs in Riyadh and Jeddah will include seminars, workshops and B-to-B meetings between Bangladeshi officials and local job agents, Bangladesh Ambassador Golam Moshi told Arab News.
The interaction between the two parties will raise awareness about labor regulations and recruitment schemes in the two countries, he said.
More than 100 local companies will take part in the Riyadh job fair, which will be attended by senior government officials from labor-related organizations from the two countries, said the ambassador.
“We have some 50,000 employment visas for our workers in the hospital, hotel, maintenance and construction sectors,” said the envoy.
“We send around 4,000 maids a month to Saudi Arabia,” he said, pointing out that the total number of Bangladeshi maids working in the Kingdom has risen to 103,000.
Bangladesh has some 1.2 million workers in Saudi Arabia, who are mainly skilled and semi-skilled employees spread across in various parts of the country.
“We have around 48 categories of workers serving in all parts of Saudi Arabia,” the envoy added.
Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia enjoy excellent bilateral relations, he pointed out. “Our relationship is bound by religion, culture and common understanding,” the ambassador stressed.
Housemaids and other workers, who arrive in Saudi Arabia for employment, are given a comprehensive orientation program at the Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training (BMET) in Dhaka, said the envoy. There are four such training centers in Bangladesh, he said.
”The maids and domestic aides are taught spoken Arabic, Saudi culture and the social environment here. They are also trained on using household appliances such as vacuum cleaners, refrigerators, washing machines and microwave ovens,” he said.
On behalf of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, the envoy thanked King Salman for opening recruitment channels from Bangladesh to deploy more workers to Saudi Arabia.
Remittances from migrant workers have played a vital role in the economic development of Bangladesh.
Remittances are the largest single source of foreign exchange in Bangladesh, which were 10 times higher than the official development assistance received by Bangladesh in fiscal year 2011-12.
In 2012, Bangladesh ranked sixth among the 10 top remittance-receiving countries and second largest remittance receiver in South Asia, according to World Bank data.
A recent study by the World Bank shows that remittances contributed to reducing the poverty level by 1.5 percent in Bangladesh. It accounts for 66 percent of total foreign reserves.
In 2015, remittances in Bangladesh hit a record high of $15.32 billion.

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