Thought for the day
"Who controls the food supply controls the people; who controls the energy can control whole continents; who controls money can control the world." -- Henry Kissinger
German media reported on 29 September that Berlin has approved a number of new weapons export deals with Saudi Arabia, in defiance of a 2018 ban over Riyadh’s brutal war in Yemen. In a letter to the Bundestag, the country’s Economy Minister, Robert Habeck, said that the deals were approved by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz just before his recent visit to Saudi Arabia.
The Yemeni government said Thursday it has signed a deal worth $200 million with Saudi Arabia to provide fuel to war-torn Yemen.
Under the deal, the Saudi Development and Reconstruction Program for Yemen (SDRPY) will provide 250,000 metric tons of oil derivatives to Yemen, the state news agency Saba reported.
Saba said the deal will help increase the capabilities of Yemeni government institutions and the stability of electric power in various government and private institutions and the industrial sector.
The elevation of Mohammed bin Salman to prime minister of Saudi Arabia, days before the Biden administration was set to decide whether to grant him immunity in the final court case over Jamal Khashoggi's murder, has been accused of being a ruse to shield the crown prince from justice.
Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Egypt plan to join BRICS, and their potential membership bids could be discussed and answered at next year’s summit in South Africa, Purnima Anand, the president of the organization, told Russian media on Thursday.
“All these countries have shown their interest in joining [BRICS] and are preparing to apply for membership. I believe this is a good step, because expansion is always looked upon favorably; it will definitely bolster BRICS’ global influence,” she told Russian newspaper Izvestia.
Saudi Arabia ranked as India’s fourth biggest trading partner in the previous financial year, as the bilateral trade exceeded $42 billion. Riyadh also re-emerged as New Delhi’s second biggest oil supplier last month, after its position was briefly challenged by Moscow which has ramped up its energy exports to India this year.
India and Saudi Arabia are negotiating the “feasibility” of carrying out bilateral trade in national currencies, a statement from the Indian Commerce Ministry said.
On 18 September, the head of the Houthis’ prisoner affairs committee, Abdul Qader al-Murtada, said that the Saudi-led coalition is obstructing the implementation of the prisoner exchange with Yemen, despite the deal being brokered through the UN.
According to Yemeni officials, the prisoners’ swap deal is at a “complete stalemate” on a local and international level, despite signing an agreement with the coalition and its partners to exchange 2,200 prisoners with each other.
The talks will no longer take place on Sunday and Downing Street said a 'full bilateral meeting' will take place at the UN General Assembly in New York on Wednesday instead.
Two members of the Howeitat, a tribe in Saudi Arabia forcibly displaced to make way for the $500bn Neom megacity, have received lengthy sentences over their protests against the project, a UK-based rights group has reported.
Women's rights were removed from a description of what a UK government fund supports in Saudi Arabia, a week after the kingdom sentenced a Leeds University PhD candidate and mother to 34 years in prison over her tweets.
Campaigners said the lack of clarity over what the Gulf Strategy Fund (GSF) does support in Saudi Arabia, at a time when the human rights situation there is deteriorating, raises questions about whether the UK is bolstering institutions that carry out abuses.