King Abdullah Chairs Cabinet Session
The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz began the Cabinet session at Al-Yamamah Palace in Riyadh today with a briefing on his latest contacts with foreign officials, including messages he sent to Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa; Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah; Qatari Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani; and UAE President Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan.
The King also discussed his meeting with a top-level Egyptian delegation led by the Speakers of Egypt’s two houses of parliament. He explained that his decision to reopen the Saudi Embassy in Cairo and the Saudi Consulates in Alexandria and Suez was in response to the sincere feelings expressed by the officials and in line with the Kingdom’s history of strong ties with Egypt. The ministers praised the King’s handling of the crisis, as well as the actions of the Egyptian leaders.
Turning to regional and international developments, the Cabinet congratulated French President-Elect Francois Hollande on his election and Russian President Vladimir Putin on his assumption of office. It expressed the desire of the Kingdom to work with both countries to strengthen bilateral relations in various fields.
The Cabinet was then briefed by Crown Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz on the outcome of the 13th Consultative Meeting of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Ministers of Interior. During the meeting, the Interior Ministers confirmed the principle of collective security among the GCC states and embraced the call of King Abdullah to move from the stage of cooperation to the formation of a GCC Union. The Cabinet was also briefed on the outcome of the 93rd session of the GCC Financial and Economic Cooperation Committee.
Turning to domestic affairs, the ministers noted the many scientific, economic and cultural activities that took place in the Kingdom last week, including the awards ceremony for the Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz Prizes and Grants for Research and Studies on the History of Arab Peninsula, as well as the launching of the King Abdulaziz Book Prize.
Addressing the remainder of its agenda items, the Cabinet approved the Arab Agreement on Transporting Inmates of Penal and Reformatory Institutions; approved a recommendation by the Minister of Foreign Affairs to exempt Saudi pre-school students affiliated with Saudi schools abroad from fixed tuition fees; assigned the Minister of Culture and Information to discuss a draft memorandum of understanding between the Saudi Ministry of Culture and Information and the Broadcasting and TV Commission of Comoros to allow Comoros TV to re-broadcast selected items of Nidaa Al-Islam broadcasting station, Holy Quran broadcasting station and Holy Quran TV channel; and renewed the membership of four members and the appointment of one member to the Board of Directors of the Electricity and Co-Generation Regulatory Authority.
The Cabinet approved the appointments of Dr. Ibrahim Al-Dujain as Undersecretary of the Mayor for Construction and Projects at Riyadh Municipality (15th rank); Mohammed Al-Mazyad as Director General of Follow-up at the Ministry of Interior (14th rank); Mohammed Al-Amry as Mayor of Najran Province at Najran Municipality (14th rank); Khalid bin Hussain as Director General of Administrative and Financial Affairs at the General Presidency of Youth Welfare (14th rank); Mohammed Al-Aqeel as Assistant Undersecretary of the Ministry for Courts Affairs at the Ministry of Justice (14th rank); and Mohammed Al-Nafeeai as Director General of the President’s Office at the General Auditing Bureau (14th rank).