Crown Prince Unveils Company that Will Develop Downtowns in Saudi Arabia

Crown Mohammed bin Salman announced the launch of Saudi Downtown Company (SDC) that will build and develop downtown areas and mixed-use destinations in 12 cities throughout Saudi Arabia. (SPA)
Crown Mohammed bin Salman announced the launch of Saudi Downtown Company (SDC) that will build and develop downtown areas and mixed-use destinations in 12 cities throughout Saudi Arabia. (SPA)
TT

Crown Prince Unveils Company that Will Develop Downtowns in Saudi Arabia

Crown Mohammed bin Salman announced the launch of Saudi Downtown Company (SDC) that will build and develop downtown areas and mixed-use destinations in 12 cities throughout Saudi Arabia. (SPA)
Crown Mohammed bin Salman announced the launch of Saudi Downtown Company (SDC) that will build and develop downtown areas and mixed-use destinations in 12 cities throughout Saudi Arabia. (SPA)

Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince, and Chairman of the Public Investment Fund (PIF), announced the launch of Saudi Downtown Company (SDC) that will build and develop downtown areas and mixed-use destinations in 12 cities throughout Saudi Arabia.

The company will aim to improve the infrastructure and build strategic partnerships with the private sector and investors, by creating new business and investment opportunities in key economic sectors, including retail, tourism, entertainment, and housing.

The 12 cities include: Al-Madinah, Al-Khobar, Al-Ahsa, Buraidah, Najran, Jizan, Hail, Al-Baha, Arar, Taif, Dumat Al-Jandal, and Tabuk.

SDC will develop over 10 million square meters of land across all projects, creating modern destinations drawn from Saudi Arabia’s diverse local culture and traditional architectural motifs, while using cutting-edge technology in every project.

By launching SDC, PIF aims to increase trade and investment opportunities in various cities across Saudi Arabia to enhance their attractiveness and create a positive impact in their local economies.

The projects will contribute to creating new opportunities for the private sector and new job opportunities for citizens, as well as localizing knowledge and expertise to help entrepreneurs and companies start and expand their businesses.

The launch of SDC reflects Crown Prince Mohammed’s vision to launch development projects in various regions of Saudi Arabia, highlighting the active role that domestic cities play in supporting the national economy.

The company’s strategy aligns with PIF’s efforts to unlock and enable the capabilities of promising sectors locally that can help drive the diversification of the economy and contribute to non-oil GDP growth, in line with the objectives of Vision 2030.



Saudi Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Signs Two MoUs with Colombian Counterpart

Saudi Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Waleed bin AbdulKarim El-Khereiji and the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia Francisco José Coy Granados. (SPA)
Saudi Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Waleed bin AbdulKarim El-Khereiji and the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia Francisco José Coy Granados. (SPA)
TT

Saudi Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Signs Two MoUs with Colombian Counterpart

Saudi Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Waleed bin AbdulKarim El-Khereiji and the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia Francisco José Coy Granados. (SPA)
Saudi Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Waleed bin AbdulKarim El-Khereiji and the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia Francisco José Coy Granados. (SPA)

Saudi Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Waleed bin AbdulKarim El-Khereiji and the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Colombia Francisco José Coy Granados, signed two memorandums of understanding on Friday in the Colombian capital, Bogota, the Saudi Press Agency said.
The memorandums of understanding will see academic cooperation between the two countries and political consultations between the foreign ministries of the two friendly countries.
After the signing ceremony, El-Khereiji and the Colombian Foreign Minister held a meeting and reviewed the bilateral relations and emphasized the importance of developing them in various fields.
The signing ceremony was attended by Acting Charge d'Affaires of the Saudi Embassy in the Republic of Colombia, Mohammed Al-Shatri, the Director General of the Vice Minister’s Office, Mutashar Al-Enezi, and Acting Foreign Minister of Colombia, Gilberto Murillo.


OIC Regrets Security Council's Failure to Accept Full UN Membership for Palestinian State

Vendors selling bread wait for customers at the Jaffa Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem on April 19, 2024. (AFP)
Vendors selling bread wait for customers at the Jaffa Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem on April 19, 2024. (AFP)
TT

OIC Regrets Security Council's Failure to Accept Full UN Membership for Palestinian State

Vendors selling bread wait for customers at the Jaffa Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem on April 19, 2024. (AFP)
Vendors selling bread wait for customers at the Jaffa Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem on April 19, 2024. (AFP)

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) expressed on Friday its profound disappointment with the UN Security Council's decision to deny Palestine full UN membership.

The OIC strongly condemned the United States’ use of its veto power, which is a clear violation of the UN Charter and a major obstacle to the Palestinian people's right to self-determination.

It also reiterated its unwavering support for Palestine's right to full political and legal representation at the UN, a right long denied, and emphasized that recognizing the State of Palestine as a full UN member is essential to achieving peace and stability in the region, and paving the way for a viable two-state solution.

The OIC commended the countries that voted in favor of the draft resolution and urged those that voted against or abstained to reconsider their positions and align them with their obligations under international law, the UN Charter, and the relevant UN resolutions.

It said it views the Security Council’s failure to grant Palestine full membership as a continuation of the decades-long injustice toward the Palestinian people, calling on the international community to take immediate action to end this injustice once and for all.


GCC: Failure to Recognize Full UN Membership for Palestinians Does Not Help Achieve Peace

Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassem Mohamed Al-Budaiwi.
Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassem Mohamed Al-Budaiwi.
TT

GCC: Failure to Recognize Full UN Membership for Palestinians Does Not Help Achieve Peace

Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassem Mohamed Al-Budaiwi.
Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassem Mohamed Al-Budaiwi.

Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Jassim Mohammed Al-Budaiwi emphasized on Friday the GCC’s firm position in support of the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination and the establishment of an independent state according to the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.

He urged the international community to work decisively and without delay to ensure the recognition of the State of Palestine and grant the Palestinian people their basic and legitimate rights in line with UN resolutions and international law.

Al-Budaiwi said the US veto of the Palestinian membership application to the UN is a step backward in the efforts to achieve just and comprehensive peace in the Middle East.

He stressed that the UN Security Council must take serious steps to re-evaluate international mechanisms concerning peace, to ensure that peoples’ rights are respected and regional and global security and stability are safeguarded.

He stressed that all countries and international organizations must stand by justice and support efforts to restore rights and build a better future for all the peoples of the region and the world.


Muslim World League Expresses Deep Regret over Obstructed Palestinian UN Membership

A general view taken from Jerusalem's Mount of Olives shows the holy city with the Dome of the Rock mosque in the center in the early hours of April 19, 2024. (AFP)
A general view taken from Jerusalem's Mount of Olives shows the holy city with the Dome of the Rock mosque in the center in the early hours of April 19, 2024. (AFP)
TT

Muslim World League Expresses Deep Regret over Obstructed Palestinian UN Membership

A general view taken from Jerusalem's Mount of Olives shows the holy city with the Dome of the Rock mosque in the center in the early hours of April 19, 2024. (AFP)
A general view taken from Jerusalem's Mount of Olives shows the holy city with the Dome of the Rock mosque in the center in the early hours of April 19, 2024. (AFP)

The Muslim World League (MWL) voiced on Friday its profound disappointment at the failure to grant Palestine full membership in the United Nations.

In a statement, the MWL said this was a severe setback that deepens the suffering of Palestinians and emboldens Israel to continue its abuses.

The decision is a significant obstacle to achieving a fair and enduring peace in the region, it warned. Additionally, it strengthens Israel's oppressive practices against the Palestinian people.

The MWL reiterated its demand that the international community shoulder its responsibility to stop Israeli aggression against civilians in Gaza.

Additionally, it called for backing the Palestinians' self-determination and the creation of a sovereign Palestinian nation within the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem serving as its capital.


UAE Voices Deep Concern Over Ongoing Regional Tensions, Calls for Restraint 

UAE Voices Deep Concern Over Ongoing Regional Tensions, Calls for Restraint 
TT

UAE Voices Deep Concern Over Ongoing Regional Tensions, Calls for Restraint 

UAE Voices Deep Concern Over Ongoing Regional Tensions, Calls for Restraint 

The United Arab Emirates expressed on Friday its deep concern over ongoing regional tensions, calling for refraining from any steps that further exacerbate escalation in the region.

In a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA), the UAE called for exercising the utmost restraint in order to avoid serious repercussions, and the region being pulled into new levels of instability.

The Ministry underlined the importance of reaching substantial solutions to the ongoing disputes and crises in the region aimed at de-escalating tensions, in addition to resolving conflicts through dialogue and diplomatic channels, and for respecting the rule of law and United Nations Charter.

The Ministry reiterated its call on the UN and UN Security Council to fulfill their responsibilities to boost international peace and security by resolving long-standing issues and conflicts in the region that threaten global security and stability.

Earlier, UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan held a telephone phone call with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian to discuss the latest, dangerous developments in the region and their repercussions on the regional and international peace and security.

Sheikh Abdullah stressed the importance of exercising the utmost self-restraint and working to prevent the expansion of the circle of tension in the Middle East, pointing out that diplomacy and dialogue are the only way to resolve differences and ensure the security of the region and the safety of its people.

He said peace, prosperity and development are what the countries of the region should enjoy and deserve.

In addition, the top diplomats discussed bilateral relations between their countries and ways to strengthen them in a way that serves the common interests of their countries and the region.


UAE’s Etihad Airways Says Operations are Back to Normal

FILE PHOTO - An Etihad Airways Boeing 777-3FX company aircraft takes off at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Roissy, France, August 9, 2016. REUTERS/Jacky Naegelen/File Photo
FILE PHOTO - An Etihad Airways Boeing 777-3FX company aircraft takes off at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Roissy, France, August 9, 2016. REUTERS/Jacky Naegelen/File Photo
TT

UAE’s Etihad Airways Says Operations are Back to Normal

FILE PHOTO - An Etihad Airways Boeing 777-3FX company aircraft takes off at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Roissy, France, August 9, 2016. REUTERS/Jacky Naegelen/File Photo
FILE PHOTO - An Etihad Airways Boeing 777-3FX company aircraft takes off at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Roissy, France, August 9, 2016. REUTERS/Jacky Naegelen/File Photo

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways' flight operations are back to normal after the harsh weather conditions in the United Arab Emirates over recent days, the airline told state news agency (WAM) on Friday.
The UAE saw its heaviest rains in 75 years bringing much of the country to a standstill for two days.
The storm, which hit neighboring Oman on Sunday, pounded the UAE on Tuesday. Eighteen persons were reported dead in Oman.
A couple of days earlier, the UAE’s National Center for Meteorology urged people to take the necessary precautions while driving their vehicles and to steer away from roads that could be blocked by flood waters.


Saudi Arabia Expresses Regret over UN Failure to Recognize Palestinian State through Membership

Saudi Arabia Expresses Regret over UN Failure to Recognize Palestinian State through Membership
TT

Saudi Arabia Expresses Regret over UN Failure to Recognize Palestinian State through Membership

Saudi Arabia Expresses Regret over UN Failure to Recognize Palestinian State through Membership

Saudi Arabia expressed regret on Friday over the failure of the UN Security Council to adopt a draft resolution accepting full membership of the State of Palestine in the United Nations.
The Ministry said that “hindering the acceptance of full membership of the State of Palestine in the United Nations only contributes to the entrenchment of the Israeli occupation’s obstinacy and to its continued violations of international law with impunity, and will not bring closer the desired peace”.
The Ministry renewed Saudi Arabia’s call on the international community to assume its responsibility and stop the Israeli occupation’s aggression on civilians in the Gaza strip.
It also called for backing the Palestinian people’s right to self-determination and the establishment of the Palestinian State based on the 1967 borders with Jerusalem as its capital in accordance with the Arab peace initiative and related international resolutions.


Saudi Arabia, Pakistan Seek to Bolster Security, Defense Ties

Saudi Assistant Defense Minister Talal Al-Otaibi arrived in Pakistan on Wednesday on a two-day visit. (Pakistan's Ministry of Defense)
Saudi Assistant Defense Minister Talal Al-Otaibi arrived in Pakistan on Wednesday on a two-day visit. (Pakistan's Ministry of Defense)
TT

Saudi Arabia, Pakistan Seek to Bolster Security, Defense Ties

Saudi Assistant Defense Minister Talal Al-Otaibi arrived in Pakistan on Wednesday on a two-day visit. (Pakistan's Ministry of Defense)
Saudi Assistant Defense Minister Talal Al-Otaibi arrived in Pakistan on Wednesday on a two-day visit. (Pakistan's Ministry of Defense)

Saudi Assistant Defense Minister Talal Al-Otaibi arrived in Pakistan on Wednesday on a two-day visit to put the finishing touches on bilateral defense projects, said the Pakistani Defense Ministry in a statement.

His trip is fresh off the heels of a two-day visit paid by a senior Saudi delegation, headed by Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah, to Islamabad on Monday.

Saudi Ambassador to Pakistan Nawaf al-Malki told Asharq Al-Awsat that Prince Faisal’s visit was an extension of the “lasting relations with Pakistan.”

It underscored the depth of these ties and their constant development, he added.

The visit aimed to increase the trade exchange and support investors and expand their work in all sectors, he went on to say.

Saudi Arabia and Pakistan have increased their defense consultations and Al-Otaibi's visit will follow up on these talks.

The two countries have held four rounds of defense consultations in less than a month.

On March 20, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince and Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia, received Pakistan’s army commander Asim Munir.

Days later, Saudi Defense Minister Prince Khalid bin Salman paid an official visit to Pakistan.

Prince Khalid held talks with Pakistani officials, including the army commander. They tackled the strong relations between their countries and their strategic defense partnership and opportunities to develop it.

The third round of the defense talks took place this week when Prince Faisal met with Munir in Islamabad. They discussed the security and strategic cooperation between their countries and means to boost it in several fields.

Saudi Arabia and Pakistan enjoy close military ties. They regularly carry out joint defense projects and have held defense maneuvers and drills.


Saudi, Spanish FMs Discuss Gaza Conflict 

Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah talks to journalists during a joint press conference with his Pakistani counterpart at the foreign ministry in Islamabad, Pakistan, 16 April 2024. (EPA)
Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah talks to journalists during a joint press conference with his Pakistani counterpart at the foreign ministry in Islamabad, Pakistan, 16 April 2024. (EPA)
TT

Saudi, Spanish FMs Discuss Gaza Conflict 

Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah talks to journalists during a joint press conference with his Pakistani counterpart at the foreign ministry in Islamabad, Pakistan, 16 April 2024. (EPA)
Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah talks to journalists during a joint press conference with his Pakistani counterpart at the foreign ministry in Islamabad, Pakistan, 16 April 2024. (EPA)

Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah held a telephone call on Thursday with his Spanish counterpart Jose Manuel Albares.

They discussed the latest developments in the region, primarily focusing on the situation in and around the Gaza Strip and the efforts to address it.


King Salman Receives Written Message from King of Bahrain 

Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Multilateral International Affairs and Supervisor General of the Public Diplomacy Agency, Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Rassi meets with Bahrain’s Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Sheikh Ali bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa in Riyadh. (SPA)
Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Multilateral International Affairs and Supervisor General of the Public Diplomacy Agency, Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Rassi meets with Bahrain’s Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Sheikh Ali bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa in Riyadh. (SPA)
TT

King Salman Receives Written Message from King of Bahrain 

Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Multilateral International Affairs and Supervisor General of the Public Diplomacy Agency, Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Rassi meets with Bahrain’s Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Sheikh Ali bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa in Riyadh. (SPA)
Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Multilateral International Affairs and Supervisor General of the Public Diplomacy Agency, Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Rassi meets with Bahrain’s Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Sheikh Ali bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa in Riyadh. (SPA)

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud received on Thursday a written message from Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa concerning relations between the two countries.

The message was received by Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for Multilateral International Affairs and Supervisor General of the Public Diplomacy Agency, Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Rassi during a meeting with Bahrain’s Ambassador to Riyadh Sheikh Ali bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa.

The officials reviewed relations between their countries and ways to boost them in various fields.

They also discussed issues of common interest.