King Salman receives dignitaries from Bahrain, Guinea in Makkah

Time: June 08, 2018

JEDDAH: King Salman received President Alpha Conde of Guinea and his accompanying delegation, Bahrain Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, and his accompanying delegation, and Speaker of the National Assembly of Kuwait Marzouq bin Ali Al-Ghanim, at Al-Safa Palace in Makkah on Thursday evening.

During his talks with Conde, bilateral relations and ways of enhancing cooperation between the two countries in all fields were reviewed.

The meeting was attended by Makkah Governor Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, State Minister Prince Mansour bin Mutaib, Interior Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Saud bin Naif, Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir and other senior officials.

Later, Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met Prince Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa.

During the meeting, they discussed the relations between the two countries, latest regional developments and a number of issues of common concern.

This article was first published in Arab News

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Saudi King receives Kuwait’s chief lawmaker

Time: June 07, 2018

Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud received Kuwait’s National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanim Thursday at Al-Safa Palace in Makkah.
Al-Ghanim was attending an Iftar (fast-breaking) banquet held by the Saudi King in honor of a number of world dignitaries, Al-Dostor news network reported.
The banquet was also attended by President of Guinea Alpha Conde and Bahrain’s Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander of Bahrain Defense Forces and First Deputy Premier Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa.

This article was first published in KUNA

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Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques receives HRH the Crown Prince of Bahrain

Time: June 07, 2018

The Custodian of Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, today received His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Prime Minister, at Al-Safa Palace in Mecca.

During the meeting, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques highlighted ongoing collaboration and coordination between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Kingdom of Bahrain, and extended his best wishes to His Majesty King Hamad, wishing Bahrain and its people continued progress and prosperity.
HRH the Crown Prince expressed his thanks to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques for highlighting the extensive and ongoing cooperation between Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, stressing that this historic partnership is rooted in a joint commitment to advance shared strategic interests.
HRH the Crown Prince went on to emphasise the instrumental role Saudi Arabia continues to play in supporting Arab and Islamic security and development issues, while highlighting the Saudi-led Arab coalition’s extensive efforts to restore security and stability in Yemen and protect its citizens.
HRH the Crown Prince then highlighted Saudi Arabia’s long-standing and steadfast commitment to improving infrastructure and facilitating services for all Muslims coming to Mecca to perform Hajj.
HRH the Crown Prince concluded by conveying HM King Hamad’s best wishes to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, and affirming Bahrain’s commitment to continue extending collaboration between Bahrain and Saudi Arabia across all levels.
Members of the royal family and other senior officials also attended the meeting.
Following the meeting, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques hosted an Iftar banquet for HRH the Crown Prince and his accompanying delegation.

This article was first published in Bahrain News Agency

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Saudi king approves proposal to manage Historical Old Jeddah project

Time: June 02, 2018

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz issued a Royal Order approving a proposal by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to establish a Historical Old Jeddah Project Management that reports to the Ministry of Culture and allocate an independent budget toward the project.

This major step comes within the framework of Saudi leadership, especially the crown prince, who is keen to preserve the historical heritage as a site rich in monuments and history, and a distinctive example of urban heritage.

The Historic Jeddah Project is also an extension of the development of historical areas such as the Gate of Al-Dariyah and the Royal Commission for the development of Al-Ula, improving, developing, and preserving its environment and its historical value.

The Historical Old Jeddah or otherwise called the downtown Jeddah is located in the heart of present Jeddah. According to sources its existence dates back to the era before Islam. The turning point in the history of the old Jeddah came about during the reign of Caliph Uthman ibn Affan, in the year 26H. /647CE, when he took her to be the sea port of Holy City Makkah facilitating regional commerce as well as receiving Hajj and Umrah pilgrims.

 

This article was first published in Al Arabiya English  

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King Salman issues several royal orders

Time: June 02, 2018

JEDDAH — The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman issued a number of royal orders early Saturday that saw the appointment of several new ministers and establishment of new councils.

The Royal Decree saw the establishment of a new separate ministry named Ministry of Culture. The Royal Order also amendment the name of the Ministry of Culture and Information to the Ministry of Information.

According to a Royal Decree, a royal authority for the city of Makkah and Holy Sites was established. Another royal decree saw the establishment of a Council for the Royal Protected Areas in the Royal Court.

The Royal Protected Areas Council shall be chaired by the Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy prime minister and minister of defense.

A Royal Decree released on Saturday appointed Prince Badr Bin Abdullah Bin Farhan as the minister of culture of the recently established ministry. The Ministry of Culture and Information has been renamed to the Ministry of Information. Prince Badr is the governor of the Royal Commission for Al-Ula.

He is also a part of the 13 members of Saudi Arabia’s General Authority for Culture’s (GCA) board, which includes artists, filmmakers, executives and government officials. He is also chairman of the MiSK Art Institute.

A Royal Decree relieved the current minister of labor and appointed instead Ahmed Bin Suleiman Bin Abdulaziz Al-Rajhi to the position. Ali Bin Nasser Al-Ghafees was relieved of his post as labor minister.

Al-Rajhi is the 18th minister in the ministry’s 60-year history, during which it underwent a change in identity through the integration and separation from social affairs.

The new minister holds a Bachelor of Industrial Engineering from King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals in Dhahran. Al-Rajhi’s appointment as minister of labor is an indication of the Saudi government’s interest in partnering with the private sector and transferring its expertise and experience to government work to achieve Saudi Vision 2030 plan.

At the same time, he has an integrated vision to achieve Saudization in the private sector. This is in line with the government’s aim to raise the percentage of Saudi private sector employees, provide them with decent jobs, and have a diverse experience in business management across the several sectors like energy, water and banking, and non-profit work.

Another Royal Decree appointed Abdullateef Bin Abdulaziz Bin Abdulrahman Al Asheikh as the minister of Islamic affairs, call and guidance.

Al-Sheikh is known for his expertise in Islamic jurisprudence and previously served in a number of governmental institutions, including Director General of Investigations at the Saudi General Presidency, and Second Assistant Secretary General at the Saudi Council of Senior Scholars.

He received his Ph.D. in Islamic Jurisprudence from the Imam Muhammad Bin Saud Islamic University, and previously established and ran a number of Islamic charities.

King Salman issued a Royal Order establishing a Royal Commission for Makkah City and Holy Sites, where the Commission shall have a board of directors under the chairmanship of the Vice President of the Council of Ministers and the Commission’s members shall be appointed by an order issued by the President of the Council of Ministers.

Another Royal Order issued stipulated that the appointment of members of the Board of Directors of the Royal Commission for Makkah City and Holy Sites. The members are Governor of Makkah Region, Minister of Interior, Deputy Governor of Makkah Region, Dr. Majed Bin Abdullah Al-Qassabi, Minister of Haj and Umrah, Minister of Economy and Planning, Yasser Bin Othman Al-Rumyan, Eng. Ibrahim bin Mohammed Al-Sultan and Dr. Fahd bin Abdullah Tunisi.

King Salman issued a Royal Order approving a proposal by Crown Prince Muhammad to establish a Historical Old Jeddah Project Management that reports to the Ministry of Culture and allocate an independent budget toward the project.

This major step comes within the framework of Saudi leadership, especially the Crown Prince, who is keen to preserve the historical heritage as a site rich in monuments and history, and a distinctive example of urban heritage.

The Historic Jeddah Project is also an extension of the development of historical areas such as the Gate of Al-Dirriyah and the Royal Commission for the development of Al-Ula, improving, developing, and preserving its environment and its historical value.

The Royal Orders are as follows:

• Establishment of a new separate ministry named Ministry of Culture.

• Amendment of the name of the Ministry of Culture and Information to the Ministry of Information.

• Establishment of a royal commission for the city of Makkah and the Holy Sites.

• Establishment of a Council for Royal Reserves in the Royal Court.

• The Royal Reserves (Protected Areas) Council shall be chaired by Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense.

• Appointment of Prince Badr Bin Abdullah Bin Farhan as minister of culture.

• Appointment of Sheikh Saleh Bin Abdulaziz Al Asheikh, as minister of state and member of the Council of Ministers.

• Appointment of Sheikh Saleh Bin Abdulaziz Al Asheikh as member of the Security and Political Affairs Council.

• Appointment of Sheikh Abdullateef Al Asheikh as minister of Islamic affairs.

• Minister of Labor and Social Development Ali Bin Nasser Al-Ghafees was relieved of his post.

• Appointment of Abdullah Bin Salim Al-Mutani as deputy speaker of the Shoura Council with the rank of minister.

• Appointment of Dr. Khalid Bin Saleh Al-Sultan as President of King Abdullah City for Atomic Energy with the rank of minister.

• Appointment of Eng. Ahmed Bin Sulaiman Al-Rajhi as Minister of Labor and Social Development.

• Eng. Saad Bin Abdulaziz Al-Khalab has been relieved of his post as deputy minister of transport.

• Appointment of Eng. Badr Bin Abdullah Bin Mohanna Dulami as deputy minister of transport.

• Appointment of Muhammad Bin Taweelah Al-Salami as assistant to the minister of civil service in the excellent rank.

• Dr. Abdulaziz Al-Suwayan has been relieved of his post as President of Hafr Al-Batin University.

• Appointment of Abdullah Bin Ibrahim Bin Abdullah Al-Saadan as chairman of the Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu with the rank of Minister.

• Appointment of Eng. Haitham Bin Abdulrahman Bin Abdullah Al-Ohali as deputy minister of communications and information technology with the excellent rank.

• Appointment of Ahmed Bin Muhammad Al-Thaqafi as adviser to the head of state security with the excellent rank.

• Appointment of Eng. Khalid Bin Saleh Bin Muhammad Al-Mudayfar as deputy minister of energy, industry and mineral resources with the excellent rank.

• Appointment of Eng. Abdulaziz Bin Abdullah Bin Ali Al-Abdulkarim as deputy minister of energy, industry and mineral resources for industry.

• Appointment of Eng. Nasser Bin Abdulrazzaq Bin Yusuf Al-Nafisi as assistant minister of energy, industry and mineral resources with the excellent rank.

• Appointment of Dr. Nasser Bin Abdulaziz Al-Dawood as deputy minister of interior with the rank of minister.

• Appointment of Eng, Badr Bin Abdullah Bin Mohanna Dulami as deputy minister of transport and roads.

• Appointment of Dr. Mohammed Bin Abdullah Bin Abdulrahman Al-Qahtani as president of Hafr Al-Batin University with the excellent rank.

• Appointment of Dr. Bandar Bin Obaid Bin Hamoud Al-Rasheed to the post of secretary to the Crown Prince (excellent rank).

• Appointment of Abdullateef Bin Abdulaziz Bin Abdulrahman Al Asheikh as the Minister of Islamic Affairs, Call and Guidance.

• Approving a proposal on Historical Old Jeddah submitted by the Crown Prince to establish Historical Old Jeddah Project Management that reports to the Ministry of Culture with an independent budget for the Management.

• Approving the forming of the Council of Royal Reserves under the chairmanship of Crown Prince. Its members are:

1- Prince Turki Bin Muhammad Bin Fahd Bin Abdulaziz.

2- Prince Muhammad Bin Abdurrahman Bin Abdulaziz.

3- Prince Abdulaziz Bin Saud Bin Naif Bin Abdulaziz.

4- Prince Abdullah Bin Bandar Bin Abdulaziz.

5- Prince Badr Bin Abdullah Bin Muhammad Bin Farhan.

6- Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture.

7- Two specialists to be chosen by the Council’s chairman.

• Royal Orders determining and naming Royal Reserves and forming their Boards of Directors as follows:

1- Rawdhat Khuraim Reserve shall be a royal reserve named Imam Abdulaziz Bin Muhammad Reserve, with its Board of Directors under the chairmanship of Prince Turki Bin Muhammad Bin Fahd Bin Abdulaziz and the membership of six specialists to be nominated by the Council of Royal Reserves.

2- Mahazah Al-Sayad Reserve shall be a royal reserve named Imam Saud Bin Abdulaziz Reserve, with its Board of Directors under the chairmanship of Prince Abdullah Bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz and the membership of six specialists to be nominated by the Council of Royal Reserves.

3- Al-Taysiyah Reserve shall be a royal reserve named Imam Turki Bin Abdullah Reserve, with its Board of Directors under the chairmanship of Prince Turki Bin Muhammad Bin Fahd Bin Abdulaziz and the membership of six specialists to be nominated by the Council of Royal Reserves.

4- Al-Tanhat and Al-Khafs Reserves shall be a royal reserve named King Abdulaziz Reserve, with its Board of Directors under the chairmanship of Prince Abdulaziz Bin Saud Bin Naif Bin Abdulaziz and the membership of six specialists to be nominated by the Council of Royal Reserves.

5- Al-Khanfa, Al-Tubaiq and Hurra Al-Hurra Reserves shall be a royal reserve named King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Reserve, with its Board of Directors under the chairmanship of Prince Abdulaziz Bin Saud Bin Naif Bin Abdulaziz and the membership of six specialists to be nominated by the Council of Royal Reserves.

6- The area located between NEOM Project and the Red Sea and Al-A’ala Project shall be a royal reserve named Prince Muhammad Bin Salman Reserve, with its Board of Directors under the chairmanship of Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, and the membership of six specialists to be nominated by the Council of Royal Reserves.

• Establishing a Royal Commission for Makkah City and the Holy Sites, where the Commission’s Board of Directors will be under the chairmanship of the deputy premier and the Commission’s members shall be appointed by an order issued by the prime minister of the Council of Ministers.

This article was first published in Saudi Gazette

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King Salman Receives GCC Secretary-General, Dean of the Diplomatic Corps

Time: May 27, 2018 

 

Jeddah – Asharq Al-Awsat
The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia, received at Al-Salam palace in Jeddah on Sunday the Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council, GCC, Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid Al-Zayani, who congratulated the King on the occasion of the Holy Month of Ramadan.
King Salman expressed his appreciation to Dr. Zayani, praying to Allah the Almighty for returns of this holy month to everyone with welfare, peace and prosperity.

During the meeting, they reviewed a number of issues related to the gulf region.

King Salman also received at Al-Salam palace in Jeddah on Sunday Dean of the Diplomatic Corps and Ambassador of the Republic of Djibouti, Diaa-Eddin Saed Bamakhrama, and Heads of Diplomatic Groups Accredited to the Kingdom; including Ambassador of Eritrea and Head of African Group Mohammed Omar Mahmoud; Ambassador of the Sultanate of Oman and Head of Arab Group Ahmed bin Hilal Al-Busaidi; Ambassador of Argentina and Head of South American Group Jaime Sergio Sarda; Ambassador of Austria and Head of European Group Gregor W. Koessler; Ambassador of Singapore and Head of Asian Group Lawrence Anderson; Ambassador of New Zealand and Head of Oceania Group Hamish McMaster; and Ambassador of Canada and Head of North American Group Dennis Horak.

During the meeting, the ambassadors sent to the King, Ramadan greetings from the leaders of Arab, Islamic and other allied countries.

The King sent his Ramadan greetings to the leaders of the same nations, Islamic and Arab countries and the whole world with welfare, peace and prosperity.

This article was first published in  ASHARQ AL-AWSAT

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King Salman: Saudi committed to fighting extremism, terrorism

Time: May 17, 2018

Manama: Saudi Arabia remains fully committed to fighting extremism and terrorism, Saudi king Salman Bin Abdul Aziz said in an address to Muslims on the holy month of Ramadan.

Since its establishment by King Abdul Aziz, Saudi Arabia has been working hard to maintain the bright image of the Islamic religion and to serve the interests of Muslims and Islamic causes, he said.

“When terrorism spread out across the world, the kingdom continued to use all its means, political weight and international prestige to combat extremism and terrorism, and to emphasise in all international forums that they are not part of any religion or culture,” he said.

Saudi Arabia has also been, through alliances with peace-loving countries, confronting anything that attempts to rob the world of its security and stability, he added, citing the establishment the first centre to fight extremist ideologies and to promote coexistence among peoples, he added.

King Salman said that Ramadan was a month of mercy and represented an opportunity for Muslims to engage in meaningful introspection, improve themselves and vie for more good deeds and greater charitable action.

Ramadan, the ninth month on the lunar-based Islamic calendar, started on Thursday in Saudi Arabia and most Arab and Muslim countries.

Physically-able adult Muslims abstain from food and drink from sunrise until sunset and engage more actively in spiritual activities, including performing extra prayers, giving alms and assisting the needy.

 

This article was first published in Gulf News

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Saudi King Salman issues royal order to protect whistleblowers in corruption cases

May 7, 2018

King Salman bin Abdul Aziz has issued a royal order ordering Saudi authorities to provide protection to whistleblowers in corruption cases, after some were mistreated following the submission of such reports, the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

The Chairman of the Saudi National Anti-Corruption Commission (Nazaha), Khalid Al Muhaisen “praised the Royal Order issued by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, which stipulates providing adequate protection to employees who report corrupt financial and/or administrative practices,” SPA said.

“The employees are not to be threatened regarding job security, benefits or rights. The royal order stipulates that the National Anti-Corruption Commission shall report entities that take disciplinary action against employees or threaten their rights or job benefits if they report corrupt practices to the Commission.”

 

Dr. Al Muhaisen said in a statement that this Order reiterates that King Salman and His Royal Highness the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman “are keen on fighting corruption and protecting the interests of citizens and residents who fulfil their duties and report corruption. They are dedicated to ensuring that these citizens not be subjected to any harm for reporting.”

This is “fully in line with Vision 2030, which put transparency, integrity and fighting corruption among its main pillars,” he added.

Dr. Al-Muhaisen expressed his gratitude to King Salman “for his limitless generous support of the National Anti-Corruption Commission (Nazaha), which has enhanced the commission’s work and facilitated its performance in achieving its goals of fighting corruption, preserving national wealth and holding those who violate the laws accountable.”

On November 4, 2017, King Salman ordered the launch of a Supreme Anti-Corruption Committee in Saudi Arabia as part of an active reform agenda aimed at tackling a persistent problem that has hindered development efforts in the Kingdom in recent decades. Saudi authorities have said that tens of billions of US dollars had been misappropriated through corruption and embezzlement, spanning several decades.

The World Bank’s latest corruption-control indicator reflected significant progress in Saudi Arabia’s anti-corruption campaign. Nazaha said in October that the Kingdom had improved its score by 18 points in the 2016 indicator, its biggest leap since entering the World Bank indicator report in 1996. According to the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) of 2016 issued by Transparency International, Saudi Arabia is ranked 62nd out of 176 countries.

This article was first published in Khaleej Times

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I will protect you if you report any corruption – King Salman

May 6, 2018

Yes, King Salman will provide you complete protection if you report any financial or administrative corruption. This was said by King Salman in a royal decree ordering the authorities to provide full protection to whistleblowers in a corruption case.

In November 2017, a supreme anti-corruption committee Chaired by Crown Princewhich aimed to undertake a persistent problem that has delayed development efforts in the Kingdom.

Saudi authorities also claimed that tens of billions of US dollars were misappropriated through corruption and embezzlement spanning several decades.  During that anti-corruption scheme, many royal members and high-profile businessmen were held accountable and held at Riyadh Ritz Carlton Hotel.

Most of them were later released after investigation or reaching a financial statement, as it was reported by media and we are not much aware of the truth behind their release. The Crown Prince stated in an interview that 95% of them are ready to settle which would generate $100 billion for the country.

فيصل بن فرحان

@FaisalbinFarhan

Protecting whistleblowers is an important part of the drive to fight corruption in the Kingdom, this order by @KingSalman is an interim measure while more detailed legislation is finalized. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-saudi-corruption/saudi-king-orders-whistleblower-protections-in-anti-corruption-push-idUSKBN1I70IN 

Saudi king orders whistleblower protections in anti-corruption push

Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has ordered protection for employees who report financial and administrative corruption, Al Arabiya TV reported on Sunday, as part of an effort to combat graft that saw…

reuters.com

Just a few months after that, King Salman too raised his hands against corruption to catch all those who are involved in the corruption drive. Providing complete protection to the whistleblower is also an important and significant part of the drive to fight corruption in the Kingdom.

It means King Salman and Prince Mohammad bin Salman, are keen on fighting corruption from the Kingdom. They want to eradicate the root of Corruption from the Kingdom.

Dr. Khalid Al- Muhaisen, the head of anti-corruption Commission (NAZAHA) praised this royal decree issued by King Salman as it instructs to provide full protection to all the employees who report any corrupt financial or business administrative practices to the relevant authorities.

Al Muhaisen said that the employees are not to be threatened regarding their job security, benefits or their rights. The decree stipulated that the Anti-Corruption Commission shall report entities that take punitive action against employees or threaten their rights or job benefits if they report any corrupt practice to the anti-corruption commission.

King Salman and Mohammad bin Salman are keen to ensure protection to all the citizens and residents who fulfill their duties and report corruption and ensured that they are not subjected to any harm for reporting

This new decree is fully in line with the Vision 2030 which puts transparency, integrity and fighting corruption among its main pillar. On the other side, the World Bank’s latest corruption- control- indicator showed significant progress in Saudi Arabia recent anti-corruption campaign.

Kingdom has improved its score by 18 points in the 2016 indicator which was a leap since entering the World Bank Indicator report in 1996.

Saudi Arabia is ranked on the 62nd number out of 176 countries on the Corruption Perception Index CPI of 2016 that was issued by Transparency International.

 

This article was first published in Life In Saudi Arabia

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