Young Saudi wins second place in international mental arithmetic competition

Primary school pupil Itizaz Alnefaie from Tabuk won second place in this year’s Worldwide Mental Arithmetic Competition on Friday. (Supplied)
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Updated 05 June 2022
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Young Saudi wins second place in international mental arithmetic competition

  • Primary school pupil Itizaz Alnefaie from Tabuk broke the world record by solving 100 maths problems
  • Solving a math problem might take most people a few minutes. However, Alnefaie takes just a second or two

JEDDAH: A young Saudi has won second place in this year’s Worldwide Mental Arithmetic Competition on Friday.

Hundreds of talented pupils representing more than 25 countries, including Saudi Arabia, participated in this year’s competition.

Primary school pupil Itizaz Alnefaie from Tabuk broke the world record by solving 100 maths problems, testing herself against the clock.

Solving a math problem might take most people a few minutes. However, Alnefaie takes just a second or two. 

Footage from the competition shows her hands swinging and flapping frantically, her fingers waggling, as she works through the problems at speed, visualizing the numbers and applying her calculations.




Primary school pupil Itizaz Alnefaie from Tabuk won second place in this year’s Worldwide Mental Arithmetic Competition on Friday. (Supplied)

“I joined the little genius program at first, and I finished the first level. Then I moved to the second level, and I started to train on mental (arithmetic) and abacus,” she told local media.

The abacus system of mental calculation involves people visualizing an abacus to solve a math problem. No physical abacus is used during the calculation as the exercise is done at great speed, and the answers are written down.

“More or less, I focused mainly on mental calculation for the competition, and I was then qualified to compete in the Mental Arithmetic Competition in Sharm El-Sheikh,” she said.

The annual competition is organized by the World Association of Mental Arithmetic Schools and is aimed at helping parents to show off their little geniuses to the world.

WAMAS says the competition is also a chance for schools to highlight the achievements of their students on the world stage and demonstrate their phenomenal abilities and skills.

“After training hard, I am happy to win second place internationally, and I am so proud of this achievement, which will add to the achievements of students in the Kingdom.”

She also praised the efforts of her teacher, who trained her well enough to compete in the two-day event.

WAMAS said that participation in the global competition was a “huge motivation” for students and also their parents, who would witness the lofty achievements of their children.

Such competitions are one way to help develop a child’s analytical skills and intellectual and academic performance. It also increases their ability to analyze and rely on digital memory.

The Tabuk education department tweeted on Saturday: “The General Director of Tabuk Education congratulates Alnefaie for achieving second place in the Worldwide Mental Arithmetic Competition.”


Saudi crown prince apologizes for not attending G7 summit in Italy

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Saudi crown prince apologizes for not attending G7 summit in Italy

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman apologized for not attending the G7 summit set to take place on Friday in Italy due to “commitments related to supervising pilgrimage,” the Saudi state news agency reported on Wednesday. 

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Saudi leaders send condolences to Kuwait’s emir over victims of deadly fire

Updated 18 min 23 sec ago
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Saudi leaders send condolences to Kuwait’s emir over victims of deadly fire

  • 49 people were killed by a blaze south of Kuwait City that broke out around dawn on Wednesday in a 6-story building housing nearly 200 foreign workers

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s King Salman on Wednesday sent a message of condolence and sympathy to the emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Meshal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, following a fire that killed and injured dozens of people in the country.

The king wrote: “We learned of the news of the outbreak of a fire in the Mangaf region, and the deaths and injuries that resulted from it, and we send to Your Highness, to the families of the deceased, and to the brotherly people of the State of Kuwait, our warmest and most sincere condolences.”

He also wished those injured a speedy recovery, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman sent similar messages of condolence to the emir and Crown Prince Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Mubarak Al-Sabah.

Forty-nine people were killed when the fire ripped through a building housing nearly 200 foreign workers on Wednesday, the Kuwaiti government said. The blaze, which broke out in the six-story building south of Kuwait City at around dawn, left dozens injured, the health ministry added.

(With AFP)


Saudi Arabia extends condolences after fire in Kuwait kills 49

Rescuers arrive at the site of a building that caught fire in Kuwait, Wednesday, June 12, 2024. (AP)
Updated 46 min 32 sec ago
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Saudi Arabia extends condolences after fire in Kuwait kills 49

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry extended the Kingdom’s condolences and sympathy to the families of those killed in a fire that ripped through a building in Kuwait on Wednesday.

The blaze, which broke out in a six-story building in the Mangaf area, south of Kuwait City, killed 49 and left dozens injured, the Kuwaiti health ministry said. 

The Saudi foreign ministry expressed the Kingdom’s solidarity with the government and people of Kuwait and its best wishes for the security and safety of Kuwaiti citizens and residents. 


Saudi authorities arrest 26 Hajj permit violators

Updated 51 min 15 sec ago
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Saudi authorities arrest 26 Hajj permit violators

  • Offenders were attempting to transport 102 people

RIYADH: Authorities in Saudi Arabia arrested 26 violators of Hajj regulations at the entrances to Makkah after they tried to enter without a valid permit, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday.

The Ministry of Interior announced that the Hajj Security Forces had arrested nine residents and 19 citizens, who had attempted to transport 102 people on Tuesday.

The seasonal administrative committees of the General Directorate of Passports issued 26 administrative decisions against them, including a prison sentence for a period of 15 days for each carrier, and a fine of SR10,000 ($2,666).

The fine will be multiplied by the number of each violator transported, and the expatriate violators will be deported and prevented from entering the Kingdom, according to the legally specified periods after the execution of the sentence. Five vehicles used for transportation have also been confiscated.

The Ministry of Interior has called on all citizens and expatriates to abide by Hajj regulations and instructions so that pilgrims can enjoy safety, security and comfort while performing their rituals.


Saudi assistant minister meets Turkiye’s defense minister

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Saudi assistant minister meets Turkiye’s defense minister

Saudi Arabia’s assistant minister of defense for executive affairs, Dr. Khaled bin Hussein Al-Biyari, recently met Turkiye’s Defense Minister Yasar Guler during his visit to Turkiye, the defense ministry reported on X on Wednesday.

During the meeting, the two sides discussed strategic relations between their countries and opportunities for bilateral cooperation in the defense and military fields.

Al-Biyari also met Chairman of the Turkish Defense Industries Authority Haluk Gurgun and they discussed opportunities for cooperation in military industries and the development of scientific research.