The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Prime Minister, chaired yesterday the Cabinet's virtual session.
At the outset of the session, the Cabinet appreciated the contents of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques' speech at the conclusion of the Women 20 (W20). The speech confirmed that the G20, presided over by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, has demonstrated its ability to lead international efforts and joint work to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and serve humanity. The speech drew attention to contain and fight the spread of the pandemic, and to enhance the readiness of countries for a bright future economy through comprehensive economic and social programs for women, ensuring their participation in decision-making and providing possible opportunities for success, and commitment to the United Nations sustainable development goals related to women at the international level.
The Cabinet indicated that the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques affirmed in his speech during the final communique of the Business 20 (B20) that many of the B20 priorities represent common pillars with the current transformations in the Kingdom through its Vision 2030, and a general goal of the Kingdom's presidency of the G20. The G20 has committed to close the immediate financing gap in global health to face the pandemic by pledging $21 billion to support the production and distribution of diagnostics, treatments, therapeutics and vaccines for all. It also injected around $11 trillion to protect the global economy, in addition to suspending debt payments of $14 billion to the poorest countries, as well as supporting the World Trade Organization reforms.
The Cabinet highlighted HRH the Crown Prince speech at the opening of Global AI Summit, and its emphasis on the Kingdom's endeavor to become a leading meeting place for the world, embracing artificial intelligence and harnessing its capabilities and potentials for the good of all humanity. The speech called to advance present and upcoming generations, and cooperate to build knowledge economies, and bridge the digital gap between the developed and the developing countries.
In a statement to Saudi Press Agency (SPA), Acting Minister of Media Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qasabi stated that the Cabinet discussed the Riyadh Initiative, which was launched during the G20 Anti-Corruption Ministerial Meeting, aimed at establishing a global network of operations for law enforcement authorities concerned with combating corruption and strengthening frameworks of communication and exchange of information and knowledge. The meeting affirmed its support in line with the G20 anti-corruption action plan for the years 2019-2021, and the high-level principles from the Kingdom's presidency of the G20 during 2020, represented in developing and implementing national anti-corruption strategies.
The Cabinet followed up on the reports and developments of the Coronavirus pandemic at the local and international levels, and the Kingdom's contributions in relation to global research to reach a safe vaccine, and to ensure that it is available as soon as its effectiveness is fully confirmed. The Cabinet was briefed on the latest virus statistics and related indicators, which showed a significant decrease in the number of cases in general. The Cabinet stressed in this regard that citizens and expatriates must continue to adhere to the application of precautionary and preventive measures and not be complacent, in light of a strong second wave of the in a number of countries.
The Cabinet reviewed the developments of events on the Arab, regional and international arenas, reiterating the Kingdom's confirmation during the High-level Meeting to Commemorate the Seventy-fifth Anniversary of the United Nations, that it has been and still is a mediator for peace to end numerous international conflicts side by side with the United Nations and its various bodies and it is continuing its tangible efforts, led by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, to continue its march to achieve stability, growth and peace in the region and the world, confront terrorism, combat the Coronavirus pandemic and its effects, and respond to calls for humanitarian aid around the world.
Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qasabi stated that the Cabinet expressed the Kingdom's aspiration that the signing of the Libyan joint military commissions of a permanent ceasefire agreement in Libya, under the auspices of the United Nations, would pave the way for the success of the understandings on the political and economic tracks, to contribute to the inauguration of a new era that achieves security, peace and stability for Libya and its brotherly people.
The Cabinet discussed the Kingdom’s keenness to regulate everything related to satellite systems, develop technologies for launching space vehicles, work to enhance space security, and strengthen international cooperation with the competent authorities in the field of space. The Cabinet referred in this regard to the Kingdom’s call before the meeting held at the United Nations on the peaceful use of outer space, for concerted international efforts to lay the necessary foundations to ensure that it is used for scientific and peaceful purposes, and to confront the threat posed by space debris, and for states to implement their activities in outer space responsibly.
The Cabinet renewed the Kingdom's rejection of any attempt to link Islam and terrorism, its denunciation of the offensive cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), or any of the messengers, condemnation and rejection of any terrorist act or practices and actions that generate hatred, violence and extremism, and the assertion that intellectual freedom is a means of respect, tolerance and peace.
Dr. Al-Qasabi stated the Cabinet expressed the Kingdom's strong condemnation of the Iranian-backed terrorist Houthi militia continues attacks targeting civilian objects and civilians in the Kingdom, which is a flagrant violation of international humanitarian law and its customary rules.
The Cabinet expressed the Kingdom's strong condemnation and denunciation of the terrorist bombing that targeted an educational center west of the Afghan capital, Kabul, and resulted in dozens of deaths and injuries, stressing that the Kingdom stands by the brotherly Islamic Republic of Afghanistan against all forms of violence, terrorism and extremism, and its rejection of these criminal acts.
The Cabinet reviewed topics on its agenda, including some being co-studied by the Shura Council. The Cabinet was also briefed on the outcomes reached by the Economic and Development Affairs Council, the Political and Security Affairs Council, the General Committee of the Council of Ministers, and the Cabinet's Experts Commission with regard to the agenda.
The Cabinet issued the following decisions:
First: The Cabinet authorized the Minister of Tourism - or his deputy - to discuss and sign with the Hungarian side a draft memorandum of understanding for cooperation in the field of tourism between the Ministry of Tourism of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Hungarian Tourism Agency.
Second: The Cabinet authorized King Abdulaziz Foundation for Research and Archives Acting Secretary-General - or his deputy - to sign a draft memorandum of understanding for cooperation between King Abdulaziz Foundation for Research and Archives of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the National Archives of the Republic of Indonesia.
Third: The Cabinet decided to abolish the General Authority for Culture and its organization. The Ministry of Culture - and the bodies established under Cabinet Resolution No. (398) dated 6/10/1441 AH - shall assume the tasks and functions that were assigned to the (canceled) General Authority for Culture.
Fourth: The Cabinet approved to allocate SR 500,000 to the family of the health practitioner who lost his/her life due to COVID-19 in the government or private sectors, whether civil or military and Saudi or non-Saudi, provided that this applies as of the date of reported the first infection with the virus on 7/7/1441 H.
Fifth: The Cabinet approved a number of promotions at the 14th and 15th ranks.
The Cabinet was briefed on a number of issues on its agenda and took relevant recommendations.