Middle East

Jeddah, Jan 9: The Presidency of Meteorology and Environment (PME) announced on Wednesday that there would be medium to heavy rainfall, thunderstorms and winds over Al-Jouf, the Northern Border Province and parts of Tabuk starting from Thursday. The PME did not rule out snowfalls in Turaif, Al-Qurayyat, Arar and the Tabuk highlands. It said there would be medium rainfall and thunderstorms from

Jeddah, Jan 9: Airfares from India to Jeddah have increased by as much as 150 percent ahead of the birthday of the Prophet (peace be upon him) on Jan. 14. According to travel agents in India, Saudi diplomatic missions are issuing Umrah visas in the Hijri month of Rabi Al-Awwal for the first time. This explains the surge in Umrah visa applications at around the time of the “mawlid nabawi” (Arabic

Jubail, Jan 8: Jubail residents have called on major companies in the region to help clean up and rebuild parts of the city hit by severe floods on Monday. They accused certain private industrial companies of making billions every year but not using this money to help improve the city’s infrastructure and provide jobs for Saudis. Ahmed Al-Qarni, a resident, said: “The population of the city has

Jeddah, Jan 8: Civil Aviation authorities cancelled 120 domestic and international flights to and from Prince Mohammed Airport in Madinah following the crash-landing of a leased Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia) aircraft on Sunday. Many passengers had rerouted their flights to King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah to avoid waiting 24 hours at Madinah airport to get connections to their

Madinah, Jan 6: Twenty-nine passengers were injured when a Saudia flight suffered a landing gear failure and was forced to make an emergency landing in Madinah early Sunday, aviation officials said. Flight SV2841, coming from the Iranian city of Mashhad, had 315 passengers on board, including 16 crew members. The captain alerted the air traffic control tower after being unable to open the rear

Jeddah, Jan 5: A joint meeting of Saudi and Indian labor officials will be held soon to finalize procedures for the recruitment of domestics to work in the Kingdom, said Overseas Indian Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi. He said the recruitment process would begin within two weeks. Ravi, however, added that the decision to launch the recruitment initiative on the basis of the new agreement would be

Jeddah, Jan 3: Imams who politicize Friday sermons at mosques will not be allowed to continue in their positions, Islamic Affairs Minister Saleh Al-Asheikh said in comments published on Thursday. “We have set up a legal panel to advise such imams. If they respond positively and follow the guidelines they will be allowed to continue. If not, then we’ll tell them they are not fit for the pulpit,”

Dubai, Jan 3: Since its inception 19 years ago the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) continues to attract people to its array of shopping and entertainment activities.The glittering opening at Al Seef Street on Thursday drew regular fans and the spirit of the season was palpable. The lineup of performers was truly international. Some of the performers included Pele Pele dance group from Swaziland, the

Riyadh, Dec 2: Expatriates here said they would be more cautious when using social networking sites after learning that a Riyadh court convicted a Saudi for falsely accusing a Kuwaiti singer of immoral behavior on his Twitter and Facebook pages. Many have welcomed the ruling, saying it protects Internet users from online predators. The Riyadh Criminal Court sentenced the man to three months in

Jeddah, Jan 1: The Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (Haia) is considering shortening the time shops close for prayer, the Haia chief has said. The period would be limited to just enough time for ablution and the actual time needed to complete a prayer, said Sheikh Abdullateef Al-Asheikh in the interview broadcast on an Arabic channel on Monday. “We would need the