Tag: Saudi Arabia

Why US Shale Revolution Is Not Good News For Middle Eastern Players
Geopolitics

Why US Shale Revolution Is Not Good News For Middle Eastern Players

US Shale Revolution: The United States went into a shale revolution. As the US moved towards this method of self-sufficiency, it could also see a boost in the number of jobs and lower fossil fuel imports. Suddenly, there was access to cheap shale oil and gas from the West Texas Permian Basin. In 2010, it has greatly started to decrease the entire world’s dependence on Middle Eastern oil and allayed fuel shortage anxieties. Since 2010, the US thus became far more self-reliant, giving its primary Middle East partners a run for their money. 

America’s major oil alleys were primarily Saudi Arabia and Iran. According to the Brookings Institution on oil, “In the modern era, no other commodity has played such a pivotal role in driving political and economic turmoil, and there is every reason to expect this to continue.” Indeed, before the pandemic hit the world, geopolitically driven wars and everything else was hinging on this liquid gold and its movement across the nations.

However, as the pandemic made the use of oil non-existent and environmental concerns pushed for use of more renewable energy, there has been more trouble for the Middle Eastern bigwigs. 

While the US has been moving towards self-reliance, it reached out to the Middle East as a military partner, fueling the various civil wars. Sometimes playing as the peacekeeper, it has primarily kept good relations with the big players like this. As America’s interest in oil has diminished, so has other players who might not be interested in creating a safety net between many Middle Eastern nations and Iran. As foreign western powers retreat, it is the Middle East versus Iran. Political analysts believe Tehran will not go into a direct confrontation mode and jeopardize its survival as it is already muzzled under US sanctions. 

But countries like Israel and Saudi Arabia might be better off coming together because without the US military support, they might not stand a fitting chance to fight a military confrontation with Iran after all. On its part, Iran has been playing its uranium enrichment card over. It is keeping the western and Middle Eastern world on tender hooks indeed. 

Why Saudi Arabia Is Heavily Invested in Yemen?
Middle East & Africa

Why Saudi Arabia Is Heavily Invested in Yemen?

Saudi Arabia Is Heavily Invested: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is upping its game in Yemen, as it earmarks a whopping $81 million towards developmental projects, official sources have confirmed. 

A battery of developmental projects amounting to SR303.4 million would comprise three megaprojects that will cater to the transport and medical needs of the Yemeni population. 

As per confirmed official reports, the three Saudi megaprojects in Yemen will include establishment of a SR213 million King Salman Medical and Educational City in Mahra governorate, a SR54.4 million rehabilitation of Aden International Airport, and SR36 million to improve Al-Abr road in the city of Marib.

Saudi Ambassador to Yemen Mohammed bin Saeed Al-Jaber has already signed the subsequent contracts in Riyadh, all in the presence of Yemen’s ministers of planning and international cooperation, finance, public health and population, transport, and public works and roads. Hadi has been all praises for KSA for its generous support, where KSA was keeping its side of the Riyadh Agreement that has also finally led to the established of the power sharing government. The new government that was announced on December 18, by Hadi on Yemeni state TV comprises 24 portfolios divided equally between the north and south.

Saudi Arabia has had its own vested interests in the Yemen. In 2015, the Kingdom led a coalition of nine nations from West Asia and North Africa that stood by the President Abd- Rabbuh Mansur Hadi’s government as Hadi tried desperately to oust the crusaders of freedom, Houthis. But the intervention became a bloody fight that led to innumerable human rights violations and war crimes. 

It was in September of 2014, that the Houthi led civil movement took over the capital of Sanaa, declaring Hadi’s government invalid, that then led to a full-blown civil war in March 2015. 

The Kingdom’s interest were focused in the early 1920s with attempts to control Yemen’s myriad tribes and secure its outer borders, Nachum Shilo. But as it got pulled into a civil war, it started to see the security of Sanaa important. The city of Sanaa provides an important access point to the Bab el-Mandeb strait, which connects the Red Sea to the Indian Ocean and is Saudi Arabia’s main gateway for exporting oil. 

While the civil war raged, Saudi Arabian led coalition has been equally responsible for devastating civilian property, air strikes, arms, and ammunition provisions, despite UN interventions of arms embargos. 

It now would like to show itself as a peacekeeper, while it should be tried in the court of justice for crime against humanity. 

Saudi Arabia Brushes Off Rumour Over Second Deadly Corona Virus Strain
Middle East & Africa

Saudi Arabia Brushes Off Rumour Over Second Deadly Corona Virus Strain

Second Deadly Corona Virus Strain: As the world is bracing for impact against the second huge attack from the Covid-19 virus strain, Saudi Arabia has denied any new cases of the new mutated virus in the Kingdom. 

According to the Ministry of Health, there has been no such evidence to prove that indeed there is the occurrence of a new mutated form of the Corona virus. Dr. Mohammed Al Abdul Ali, the ministry’s spokesperson has denied any such development to the media. 

Dr. Ali has requested people to seek the source for accurate information and not be misguided by rumours. While the world is again closing down borders to contain the spread of the second wave of a more portent mutated form of the virus, Dr. Tawfiq Al Rabiah, Minister of Health, has confirmed that the mutated strain of coronavirus is not worse than Covid-19, and the current vaccine is effective against it.

In the Emirates, UAE and Bahrain has approved of the Chinese made vaccines. Saudi Arabia 

Adding on to an official statement, Mr. Rabiah has added that, “If a person is infected with the mutated coronavirus, then it is similar to the known coronavirus, and the mutated strain is not worse than COVID-19, and the vaccine is effective to deal with it. This is one of the promising things,” he said while noting that the matter, whether the new variant spreads faster or not, is under study and evaluation.”

In the end of November, Saudi Arabian government had already committed more than $500 million to fund efforts to develop and produce a safe and effective vaccine against the coronavirus disease. Official statements confirm that the vaccine centers will be soon opening in western region and the Eastern Province. This is a part of the ongoing Covid-19 inoculation campaign from the Ministry of Health in Saudi Arabia

Additionally, more than 440,000 people have already signed up on the Sehaty app to receive the coronavirus vaccine. Ninety percent of those registered through the app are between the ages of 20-60 years old, according to an official statement from the ministry. 

Since the lockdowns, Saudi Arabia has reported a 97% recovery rate. It has maintained strict hygiene and monitoring protocols.

Yemen’s Hadi regime and STC declare a new Power-Sharing Government 
Middle East & Africa

Yemen’s Hadi regime and STC declare a new Power-Sharing Government 

Yemen’s Hadi regime: On Friday, the Saudi-led Arab coalition in Yemen declared a new power-sharing government that would incorporate Southern Transitional Council (STC) members in the recognized government.

Yemen’s PM Maeen Abdulmalik was reappointed as the head of the new cabinet, which incorporates five ministers from Yemen’s new political blocs, the STC, and the Islah party, the Hadi’s office stated. 

Yemeni PM Maeen Abdulmalik emphasized that the new power-sharing administration that was declared on Friday will work as per the policy to serve the interests of the citizens. 

Not long after the declaration, Abdulmalik added that the government would work jointly to reestablish the state and end the Iranian expansionist plan and its Houthi intermediary. 

“The cabinet has a definite agenda on the most proficient method to manage the current difficulties,” he emphasized, adding that he was anticipating the “backing of siblings and companions and political, cultural and well-known forces in Yemen.” 

Abdulmalik praised Saudi Arabia for bridging gaps between different Yemeni political parties and executing the Riyadh Agreement. 

He likewise applauded the collaboration of all political parties that have prioritized public interests above their own and fixed their visions on the fight for Yemen and its Arab identification against the Iranian and Houthi program.

The new power-sharing government followed fourteen days of the separation of troops and their redeployment in the south that would recognize their re-visitation of battlefronts with the Iran-backed Houthi armies in the north and to outskirts Aden, the intensely contested port city. 

“Our priority is Yemeni people all through the nation, who have suffered a lot. Right now is an ideal opportunity for official and mainstream solidarity to improve everyday conditions.” “We know that the difficulties are incredible, however, we will courageously stand up to them,” Abdulmalik stated.

Kremlin Seeks Support Of Middle East For Peace In Libya
Middle East & Africa

Kremlin Seeks Support Of Middle East For Peace In Libya

Kremlin Seeks Support: Russia is now seeking help from some likeminded countries to restore democracy and normalcy in Libya. For this, Kremlin has asked the UAE and Egypt to mitigate the change. 

Egyptian, in response, is seeking negotiations in Geneva where it is focused at the exit of foreign mercenaries who have been instrumental in creating chaos in Libya. This proposal has garnered support from Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Russia, Jordan and Bahrain. This agreement has come through in a recent press briefing held in Moscow.

According to UAE Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, “The greatest challenge facing Libya is the control of the extremist groups that have dominated the political scene for over a decade.”

Libya has been at loss of a proper functioning government since 2011, post which the country has been tossed around between rival administrations in the east and the west. 

Russia has been in support of General Haftar who is on the other side of the warring faction in Libya. Any kind of peace talks which involves Haftar, it is confirmed, does not feature on the negotiation table for defense minister the UN-backed government of GNA in Libya, Salah-al-Namroush, who has also publicly reproached France for siding with Haftar. 

According to the UN backed GNA, Khalifa Haftar is nothing less that a war criminal and a warlord.  Till date, despite a ceasefire and long standing arms embargo, Libya continues to be swamped by 20,000 foreign fighters and mercenaries, the United Nations envoy to the country has confirmed recently, calling the situation a “shocking violation of Libyan sovereignty.”

Saudi Arabia slams Iran for the accusation over nuclear scientist killing
Middle East & Africa

Saudi Arabia slams Iran for the accusation over nuclear scientist killing

Saudi Arabia slams Iran: On Tuesday, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir stated that Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif was too eager to reprimand the Kingdom for anything negative that occurred in Iran. 

“Will Zarif reprimand us for the following flood or earthquake?” he tweeted. “It isn’t the policy of Saudi Arabia to engross in assassinations; in contrast to Iran, which has been involved in such strides since the Khomeini Revolution in 1979. 

“Ask numerous nations who have lost a significant number of their residents because of Iran’s lawbreaker and illicit conduct,” Al-Jubeir added. 

On Tuesday, Iran’s parliament passed a bill requiring the public authority to help uranium enrichment by 20% and end UN assessments of its atomic plants.

The current bill would require another parliamentary vote to get cleared and also approval from the Guardian Council. Besides, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has the last say on every atomic policy. 

The bill would provide European signatories to the 2015 atomic arrangement three months to lift sanctions on Iran and to reestablish its admittance to the global banking system. 

As per political analysts following the assassination of Iranian atomic scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, Tehran has been blaming different nations for having a hand in it. 

“There is no uncertainty that this step establishes a threat, increasing it to 20 percent implies that it will be near developing an atomic bomb,” political researcher Dr. Hamdan Al-Shehri revealed to Arab News.

He added that the move showed the Iranian government‘s emphasis on destabilizing the locale, and its assurance to dominate the competition to build atomic weapons. 

“If Iran obtains atomic weapons or accomplishes that objective then it will bring about an extraordinary peril to the region. Fakhrizadeh’s killing proposes that Iran was anticipating for an escalation.” “Iran may have the atomic bomb at this point without the global community making any move against it. 

Al-Shehri added. 

He added that the killing of the nuclear scientist won’t alter the condition, even the attacks on Iranian offices would not influence the real Iranian foundation.

In Nov, Netanyahu held discussions with the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, as per Israeli media reports, Netanyahu and Mossad agency chief Yosef Meir Cohen met Prince Mohammed, along with US Secretary Mike Pompeo, in the Red Sea city of Neom, the sources added. However, Riyadh refused any such conference took place.

Moreover, The New York Times stated that the US and two other intelligence officials stated Israel had a hand in the firing on Fakhrizadeh. Israel has not yet commented on the allegation or neither denied it.

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