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Tag Archives: Saudi Arabia

Our Friends in Riyadh

By Toby C.Jones  for www.jacobinmag.com –   Last Wednesday, a criminal court in Saudi Arabiasentenced Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, one of the kingdom’s most visible political dissidents, to death. Saudi authorities have justified the verdict in terms of national security. Convicted on vague charges of sedition, Al-Nimr was tried in …

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Thaw In Saudi-Iran Ties As FMs Meet In US

THE LEVANT – By Ghazanfar Ali Khan – Saudi and Iranian foreign ministers have met in New York for the first time, signaling a possible thaw in relations that have been strained for decades. Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal met with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on the sidelines …

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Saudi Arabia curbs ISIL recruitment attempts

THE LEVANT – By Sultan al-Barei – Security and outreach campaigns are under way in Saudi Arabia to prevent youth from traveling abroad to fight alongside extremist groups at the urging of some imams and religious scholars, officials told Al-Shorfa. These efforts include the recent arrest of an imam and seven others in …

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Lebanon’s arm deals

THE LEVANT – France and Saudi Arabia are close to signing a $3 billion arms deal for Lebanon, the Elysee Palace said Monday following talks between President Francois Hollande and the Saudi crown prince. “It will not be signed Monday but it is being finalized,” an aide to the president …

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Saudi Arabia hands down sentences

THE LEVANT – A Saudi Arabian court has sentenced 18 men to prison terms of 10 months to 25 years for their part in a series of militant attacks against government and foreign targets between 2003-06, state media reported late on Wednesday. The men were part of a group of 50 …

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Saudi Prince is attacked in Paris

THE LEVANT – Kalashnikov-wielding robbers have attacked the motorcade of a Saudi prince in Paris, making off with 250,000 euros ($335,000) in cash and reportedly stealing “sensitive” documents, French police said Monday. The theft took place in northern Paris as the motorcade was making its way from the Saudi embassy …

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President Sisi arrives in Saudi Arabia

THE LEVANT – Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi met late Sunday in Saudi Arabia with one of his strongest international supporters, King Abdullah, to talk about key security issues impacting the region. Saudi Arabia’s monarch has given Egypt at least $12 billion in aid to buoy its economy after the military, led …

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Cyber savvy – terrorists turn to social media

THE LEVANT – By Gill Hertz – The ultra-violent al Qaeda offshoot group Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) has targeted Saudi Arabian intelligence officers for a campaign of assassination as part of plans by the group to expand activities inside the oil-rich kingdom. A Twitter campaign …

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Outrage in Saudi Arabia over headscarf-free TV presenter

THE LEVANT – The unprecedented appearance of a female newsreader on Saudi state television without a headscarf has caused a scandal in the deeply conservative Islamic state.  The unnamed anchor, who has previously worn a hijab in clips circulated online, was reading a bulletin from London for the Al Ekhbariya channel. Strict Islamic …

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Saudi Arabia takes the lead in condemning Israel

THE LEVANT – Saudi King Abdullah said Friday that world silence over Israeli “war crimes” in the Gaza Strip was “inexcusable,” in a speech published by the official SPA news agency.“We see the blood of out brothers in Palestine being shed in collective massacres, that have spared nobody, and in war …

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Rejected by relatives, 400 stay in Taif mental hospital

THE LEVANT – Spokesman for Health Affairs Siraj Al-Hemaidan said there are 400 mental patients in the city’s mental hospital whose families have refused to accept them. He told Al-Hayat daily that these patients have been provided with the proper treatment and their conditions have greatly improved, and medical teams have …

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Water bribery case: BIP set to summon new suspects

THE LEVANT – The Saudi  Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution (BIP) will soon summon new suspects in the “water kickbacks” case, Al-Watan daily reported citing unnamed sources. Several officials are accused of receiving bribes from private companies during a water rationing campaign. They are also allegedly involved in embezzlement of …

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How Saudi Arabia helped ISIS take over the north of Iraq

Written by Patrick Cockburn – For The Independent – How far is Saudi Arabia complicit in the Isis takeover of much of northern Iraq, and is it stoking an escalating Sunni-Shia conflict across the Islamic world? Some time before 9/11, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, once the powerful Saudi ambassador in …

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