Saudi Arabia

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Saudi Women Rock the Voter Registration for First Time

Historic moment as women prepare to cast ballots in December elections

(Newser) - Not unusual: A well-known businessperson and a schoolteacher registered to vote Sunday in Saudi Arabia's municipal elections in December. Unusual: that they were both women. Jamal Al-Saadi and Safinaz Abu Al-Shamat earned the honors of being the first two females ever in the kingdom to register (Saadi in Medina,... More »

Saudis Arrest 400 in Anti-Terror Sweep

Announcement comes day after devastating ISIS bomb in Iraq

(Newser) - Saudi Arabia announced today it has broken up planned Islamic State attacks in the kingdom and arrested more than 400 suspects in an anti-terrorism sweep. The Saudi Interior Ministry accused those arrested over the past few weeks of involvement in several attacks, including a suicide bombing in May that killed... More »

Saudi Prince Is Giving Away His Entire Fortune

Alwaleed's billions will go to charity

(Newser) - The push by Bill Gates and Warren Buffett to get billionaires to give away at least half their wealth to charity just got a major boost: Saudi Arabia's Prince Alwaleed bin Talal says he will give away his entire $32 billion fortune in the coming years, reports Bloomberg . That... More »

Kansas Student 'Saved Hundreds' in Mosque Attack

ISIS claims 2nd suicide attack on Shiite mosque

(Newser) - Abduljaleel Alarbash was a long way from Kansas when he died, but his fellow students at Wichita State University say they will never forget him or his bravery. The 22-year-old, who had gone to Saudi Arabia to marry his fiancee, was one of three volunteer security officers killed in an... More »

5 Astounding Numbers: the World's Biggest Hotel

The Abraj Kudai is set to open in 2017

(Newser) - Come 2017, the world will have a new largest hotel by room count—by a hefty margin. The Guardian takes a look at what's coming to Saudi Arabia's Mecca: the $3.5 billion Abraj Kudai, which will sit about a mile from the Grand Mosque and feature one... More »

Saudi Arabia Now Hiring Executioners

Beheading rate has more than doubled since last year

(Newser) - Saudi Arabia has stepped up its execution rate: Eighty-five people have been beheaded so far this year, compared to 88 in all of 2014, according to Human Rights Watch—and created job opportunities in the process. The country's Ministry of Civil Service has advertised for eight executioners, with no... More »

Saudis Say They'll Keep Up With Iran in Nuke War

Obama meeting with Arab leaders today to assure them of Middle East security

(Newser) - President Obama is convening with six Arab leaders today at Camp David, hoping to assure them that a deal between the West and Iran to contain the latter country's nuclear efforts won't compromise the security of the Middle East. But the Saudis already seem to be balking, announcing... More »

Moroccan F-16 Goes MIA Ahead of Yemen Ceasefire

So far Yemen has remained relatively tight-lipped about the missing fighter jet

(Newser) - A Moroccan F-16 fighter jet taking part in a Saudi-led coalition targeting Shiite rebels in Yemen has gone missing, the North African nation's military said today, a day ahead of the start of a proposed five-day humanitarian ceasefire. It wasn't immediately clear what happened to the jet, which... More »

Saudi King Skipping Summit at Camp David

Because it coincides with Yemen ceasefire, minister says

(Newser) - Saudi Arabia's King Salman will not attend a Camp David summit of US and allied Arab leaders, his foreign minister, Adel al-Jubeir, said today. In a statement, al-Jubeir says the summit Thursday coincides with a humanitarian cease-fire in the conflict in Yemen, where a Saudi-led coalition is fighting Shiite... More »

Saudi Women Get Around Driving Ban by Using Uber

Ride-sharing apps sometimes only recourse for females in strict Islamic state

(Newser) - With female driving in Saudi Arabia effectively banned, mass transit not that great, taxis unreliable and dirty, and private cars expensive, women can have a hard time getting around in the country, the Los Angeles Times reports. "If you can't find a driver, you have to wait for... More »

HRW: Saudis Dropped US Cluster Bombs on Yemen

As Yemen says at least 20 coalition troops have landed

(Newser) - Even as Yemen said today that at least 20 Saudi-led troops were on the ground in the city of Aden, allegedly performing reconnaissance, Saudi Arabia's recently concluded bombing campaign against Houthi rebels there was taking a hit in the form of a critical Human Rights Watch report. As CNN... More »

Saudis: We Repelled Rebel Border Attack

'Dozens' dead after attempted Houthi incursion

(Newser) - A cross-border attack on Saudi Arabia by Yemeni rebel forces resulted in late-night clashes that left three Saudi soldiers and "dozens" of Yemeni rebels dead, according to the Saudi Defense Ministry. A ministry statement said that a group of Yemen's Shiite rebels attacked "border posts and control... More »

Saudi King Dumps Heir in Royal Shakeup

His son is in, a long-serving foreign minister is out

(Newser) - There's been a shakeup of power in Saudi Arabia: In several royal decrees announced today, King Salman replaced his heir, as well as the world's longest serving foreign minister, Reuters reports. Salman's nephew Interior Minister Mohammed bin Nayef, 55, has been named crown prince—next in line... More »

Saudis End Bombing Campaign in Yemen

They say it worked, but facts on the ground suggest otherwise

(Newser) - Saudi Arabia has ended its month-long bombing campaign of rebels trying to take over neighboring Yemen, reports Reuters . Saudi officials say the air campaign conducted by it and other Arab nations had achieved its goal of keeping Houthi militants out of power. But the BBC notes that the rebels—widely... More »

Washington Sends Warship to Yemen

The USS Theodore Roosevelt may intercept Iranian arms

(Newser) - Proxy war, anyone? A US Navy aircraft carrier is headed for waters near Yemen amid concerns that Iran is sending fresh arms to Shiite Houthi rebels there, the AP reports. The USS Theodore Roosevelt will join other US ships in the area while roughly eight Iranian vessels, possibly carrying arms,... More »

Yemen Ports Frozen by Saudi-Led Forces: Coalition Rep

No weapons are coming in or going out of the country in strike against Shiite rebels

(Newser) - The spokesman for the Saudi-led campaign against Yemeni rebels says coalition naval forces have besieged the country's ports. Ahmed Asiri told reporters today that the naval forces are blocking the movement of ships to prevent weapons and fighters from entering or leaving Yemen. Asiri, speaking from the Saudi capital... More »

Arab Nations to Form Joint Military Force

Saudi Arabia, Egypt will likely be at the helm

(Newser) - Arab League member nations formally announced an agreement today to form a joint military force. While details of how such a force would actually operate remain thin, the agreement is a telling sign of a new determination among Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and their allies to intervene aggressively in regional hotspots,... More »

Yemen on the Brink: Leader AWOL, Saudis Begin Strikes

Will proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran follow?

(Newser) - The most common word in reports and headlines out of Yemen today is "chaos." The nation once seen as a vital ally in the fight against al-Qaeda is now on the brink of civil war, with Saudi Arabia launching a military operation and the AP reporting that President... More »

Unsavory Donors Put Clinton in Bind on Women's Rights

Saudi Arabia has provided some $10M to Clinton Foundation since 2001

(Newser) - Next month will likely see Hillary Clinton announce she's running for president, the New York Times reports, and women's rights are set to be a theme of her campaign. Though she has long championed the issue, things have recently gotten complicated: The Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation... More »

Blogger Facing 950 Lashes Could Get Death Sentence

Wife says apostasy charge may be reinstated

(Newser) - After an international outcry over the harsh sentence handed out to a Saudi Arabian blogger, the kingdom now appears to have decided a decade in prison and 1,000 lashes is too lenient. Raif Badawi's wife tells the Independent that official sources say charges of apostasy against him may... More »

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