KSrelief chief highlights Saudi Arabia’s aid efforts

Short Url
Updated 16 October 2022

KSrelief chief highlights Saudi Arabia’s aid efforts

WARSAW: The supervisor-general of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center, Dr. Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, gave a lecture at the University of Warsaw in Poland on Saturday discussing the Kingdom’s humanitarian work around the world. He said that Saudi Arabia had spent $95 billion on humanitarian aid to assist 160 countries.

Al-Rabeeah highlighted some of the milestones in the Kingdom’s charitable work, including its aid for victims of floods in Punjab in 1950; the establishment of the Saudi Fund for Development — aimed at stimulating economic growth in developing countries — in 1974, which provided aid to 55 countries in just four years; donations to victims of the war in Kosovo in 1999; donations to those in need after the 2004 tsunami in the Indian Ocean, Cyclone Sidr in Bangladesh in 2007, and the earthquake in Sichuan, China in 2008; and the largest ever donation to the World Food Program ­— SR500 million (more than $133 million) — also in 2008.

KSrelief was established in 2015 in accordance with King Salman’s directives to be a leading center for relief and humanitarian work, the humanitarian arm of the Kingdom and the only body authorized to deliver the Kingdom’s aid abroad.

He added that the center has been responsible for 2,120 projects, with an overall value of more than $6 billion, in 86 countries in cooperation with 175 international, regional and local partners. Yemen has had the largest share of that aid, which includes projects in the fields of education, health, nutrition, shelter, volunteering, security, water and environmental sanitation, emergency communications, logistics, and more.

The center’s projects have also provided humanitarian aid to Syrian, Yemeni, and Rohingya refugees in various places, as well as to those in need during crises in Sudan, Indonesia, Pakistan, South Africa, Japan, and elsewhere.

Hajj pilgrims from around the world celebrate Eid Al-Adha at the holy sites

Updated 5 sec ago

Hajj pilgrims from around the world celebrate Eid Al-Adha at the holy sites

  • Abdullah, a pilgrim from Egypt, told Arab News: “Praise be to God, this is our first hajj and thankfully it went smoothly”

MAKKAH: Hajj pilgrims, hailing from various corners of the globe, embarked on a profound journey from Muzdalifah to Jamarat on Sunday, culminating in a joyous celebration of Eid Al-Adha.

The diversity of languages, cultures, and backgrounds present at Jamarat showcased the universal appeal of Islam and the importance of coming together in shared faith.

Eid Al-Adha, or the Feast of Sacrifice in English, has its roots in the story of the Prophet Ibrahim, who God instructed in a dream to sacrifice his son, Ismail, as a test of faith.

The diversity of languages, cultures, and backgrounds present at Jamarat showcase the universal appeal of Islam. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)

As he was about to make the sacrifice, God intervened and sent the Angel Gabriel with a ram to be sacrificed instead.

Devoted individuals, who traversed vast distances to partake in the sacred pilgrimage, unite in shared reverence and harmony to mark the significant occasion.

Abdullah, a pilgrim from Egypt, told Arab News: “Praise be to God, this is our first hajj and thankfully it went smoothly.”

Abdullah said that he and his mother went to Arafat, and from Arafat to Muzdalifah, then on to Mina. “We came to Jamarat here, and thank God everything went well.

“Honestly, it is an indescribable feeling for someone experiencing it for the first time. It is a blessing from God that he brought us here, and may he grant us this opportunity every year,” he said.

As his son was cutting his hair, Suleiman Ali, a 70-year-old pilgrim from Indonesia, told Arab News that he is blessed to be spending Eid Al-Adha in Makkah with his family.

“The first time I performed Hajj was in 1993, and I never thought God would bless me with another chance but with my family this time.”

Asma, a pilgrim from India, told Arab News it is her first time in Saudi Arabia and performing Hajj.

“I am happy to be here with my parents, my husband, my brother-in-law, and his wife,” she said.

“It is a very emotional journey for us because we always dreamed of celebrating Eid Al-Adha here.”

Asma said that they still have not performed their animal sacrifice but they are excited to do so.

The annual pilgrimage to Makkah and the holy sites brings together people from all walks of life, breaking down barriers and fostering a sense of unity among believers.

The diversity and unity among pilgrims serve as a poignant reminder of the universal bond that transcends geographical borders and cultural differences.


1bn liters of water pumped on Arafat Day

Updated 36 min 37 sec ago

1bn liters of water pumped on Arafat Day

MINA: The Saudi National Water Company has reported that the amount of water that was pumped and distributed to Makkah and the holy sites on Arafat Day reached around 1 billion liters.

It added that the holy sites consumed 286 million liters, while over 704 million liters were distributed through Makkah’s public water systems.

It said the distribution was supported by the supervision and follow-up of the company’s engineers and supervisors from the working areas covering Makkah and the holy sites.

The company said its operations and water supplies work were in accordance with the plans set in advance to serve pilgrims. These plans included pumping water to the holy sites and the Grand Mosque’s facilities 24/7, in addition to maintaining pumping 21 hours per day for the neighborhoods in Makkah.

It emphasized the absence of any disruptions to its operations, affirming that field teams were always ready to handle and address any emergency.

The company said it carried out about 4,840 laboratory tests on Arafat Day to ensure the quality of water provided to pilgrims.

Saudi crown prince receives Eid Al-Adha greetings from Bahraini king

Updated 16 June 2024

Saudi crown prince receives Eid Al-Adha greetings from Bahraini king

  • King Hamad lauded the exceptional organization witnessed during this year's Hajj season

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman received a phone call on Sunday from Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa during which they exchanged with them Eid Al-Adha greetings, Saudi Press Agency reported.
King Hamad lauded the exceptional organization witnessed during this year's Hajj season, which facilitated pilgrims performing their religious rituals with safety and ease.
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman expressed his gratitude to King Hamad for his noble sentiments, asking God to accept the pilgrims’ Hajj and good deeds.

Hajj pilgrims reach Jamarat Bridge

Updated 16 June 2024

Hajj pilgrims reach Jamarat Bridge

  • It is here Muslims believe devil tried to talk Prophet Ibrahim out of submitting to God’s will
  • Pilgrims then return to Makkah to do Tawaf, circumambulation of Kaaba

RIYADH: Hajj pilgrims on Sunday reached Jamarat Bridge as they advanced through Mina for the final rite, the stoning of the devil, on the first day of Tashreeq.

It is here that Muslims believe the devil tried to talk the Prophet Ibrahim out of submitting to God’s will. On the 10th day of Dul Hijjah, Hajj pilgrims collect small stones that they throw at three pillars in the Jamarat Al-Aqaba, representing the devil.

Huge crowds lined up to perform the rite, many holding umbrellas to shield themselves from the sun. The pilgrims say “Allah-u Akbar” (“God is the greatest”) each time they cast a pebble.

Pilgrims can stone the pillars any time from midday to midnight on the day of the ritual.

After finishing the ritual, male pilgrims traditionally shave or cut their hair and change out of their ihram. Women cut a lock of their hair.

The ihram symbolizes equality, religious unity and the pursuit of spiritual renewal.

Security guards sprayed the pilgrims with water as they braved searing heat to reach the Jamarat complex. Temperatures as high as 45 degrees Celsius have been recorded at the Hajj this year.

The pilgrims will then return to Makkah to do Tawaf, the circumambulation of the Kaaba.

Junaid Nizami, a pilgrim from Pakistan, told Arab News that he was impressed by the arrangements in place to ensure the safety of pilgrims.

“My experience in Jamarat was good and they prepared very well for the pilgrims. Also, the system (is created) in a way where no one can clash with each other. There are police, medical staff and helpers who are supporting the people.”

After dawn prayers, when pilgrims leave Muzdalifah and proceed to Jamarat to take part in the stoning rite, women and older pilgrims can delegate this responsibility to a male in their spiritual journey.

First phase of 2024 Hajj security plans completed

Updated 16 June 2024

First phase of 2024 Hajj security plans completed

MAKKAH: Col. Talal bin Abdulmohsen Al-Shalhoub, security spokesperson at the Ministry of Interior, announced during a daily press conference for the 2024 Hajj season the successful completion of the first phase of security plans to lead pilgrims from Makkah to subsequent holy sites.

After spending around 12 hours in Arafat on Saturday for the most important part of Hajj, the over 1.8 million worshippers officially moved to the rocky plains of Muzdalifah in preparation for the final stages of their Hajj.

“The second stage of the journey to the holy sites is currently being implemented to transport pilgrims from Arafat to Muzdalifah, where they will be spending the night before departing to Mina for Eid Al-Adha,” said Al-Shalhoub.

He added that 25 persons found to be violating Hajj regulations were arrested on the night of June 15 for transporting 103 individuals without Hajj permits.

“The Unified Security Operations Centers (911) in Makkah received 52,274 calls from June 14 to 15. These calls varied between security reports, inquiries, and service calls from pilgrims,” he said.

Speaking on the journey to Muzdalifah, Ayed Al-Ghuwaynem, undersecretary of the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah for Hajj Affairs said: “The tranquility and comfort we witnessed today in Arafat enabled the pilgrims to perform rituals and devote themselves to worship and supplication.”

He added that the smooth operations were the fruit of early planning and collective governmental action.

“This was the result of distinguished cooperation from pilgrims’ affairs offices from all countries, as well as pilgrims’ service providers inside and outside the Kingdom,” said Al-Ghuwaynem.

Dr. Mohammed Al-Abdulali, spokesperson for the Ministry of Health, said that over 112,000 pilgrims have received health care from different providers during the Hajj season, including clinics, emergency departments, hospitals, and intensive care units.