King Abdullah chairs Cabinet session (5/28/12)

May 28, 2012

The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz began the Cabinet session at Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah today with a summary of his latest contacts with foreign leaders, including a telephone call he received from Lebanese President Michel Suleiman.

The Cabinet reviewed a number of reports on the latest developments in the Arab world and their repercussions on regional and international security. The ministers expressed the Kingdom’s firm condemnation of the continuing bloodshed in Syria, including the massacre that led to the death of more than 100 people in the town of Houla. They stressed the international community’s humanitarian responsibility to stop the violence against unarmed civilians, which has killed scores of innocent people.

The Cabinet welcomed the positive outcome of the 3rd Ministerial Meeting of the Group of Friends of Yemen, held last week in Riyadh, during which the participants stressed full support for the unity, sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Yemen. The ministers lauded the Kingdom’s contribution of $3.25 billion to support developmental projects in Yemen, a contribution that reflects the Kingdom’s commitment to its neighbor.

The Cabinet also expressed appreciation for the adoption by the World Health Organization (WHO) General Assembly of the Kingdom’s initiative to create a medical program geared towards large gatherings. It noted that the Kingdom’s success in monitoring epidemics and treating ailing pilgrims, Umrah performers and visitors from all parts of the globe has provided a case study for professionals and specialists in health security worldwide.

Addressing the remaining items on its weekly agenda, the Cabinet approved the establishment of the Saudi Commission for Accredited Evaluators, a non-profit organization tasked with determining the value of real estate, economic facilities, equipment and movable property; approved the conversion of Saudi radio and television, now part of the Ministry of Culture and Information, into the public Radio and Television Commission and the transfer of the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) into its own public commission; approved a package of measures, including paying an annual premium of not more than three months salary, for every member of the team enforcing the rules against trade cover-ups; and approved the regulations of the National Center for Studies and Social Research (NCSSR).

The Cabinet approved the appointments of Mohammed Al-Assaf as Administrative Consultant at the General Presidency for the Grand Mosque and Prophet’s Mosque Affairs (15th rank); Tareq Al-Rasheed as Minister Plenipotentiary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Fahd Al-Ruwais as Director General of Administrative and Financial Affairs at the Ministry of Culture and Information (14th rank); Saleh Al-Harbi as Administrative Consultant at the Ministry of Culture and Information (14th rank); and Othman Al-Muhaimeed as Financial Consultant at the General Auditing Bureau (14th rank).