Saudi student’s death in San Deigo under probe


Saudi Gazette report

Washington — The Saudi Consulate General in Los Angeles is following up on the investigation into the cause of death of Saudi scholarship student Bandar Al-Barqi, the consulate said in a statement.

The consulate is dealing with the case as per the instructions of Saudi Ambassador to US Prince Khalid Bin Salman, the statement said.

The consulate said it has appointed an attorney to follow up on the case which is still under investigation.

The final report has not yet been issued by local authorities on the cause of death, it said.

The consulate clarified that it has not issued any statement related to the death of the student, confirming that it will clarify the cause of death immediately after the issuance of final report.

Bandar Bin Amer Bin Ali Al-Barqi was found dead in his apartment on Feb. 1 in San Diego, California.

Source : Saudi Gazette

Tour brings foreigners to areas devastated by nuclear accident


There is growing interest among foreign tourists for a tour in English to former evacuation zones in the northeastern Japan prefecture of Fukushima where a devastating earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 triggered a nuclear disaster.

“More people are becoming interested in going on the tour that can deepen their knowledge,” explains an official at the Japan National Tourism Organization.

At 8 a.m. on a frigid morning in January, foreign tourists gathered in front of Tokyo Station and boarded a station wagon headed to Fukushima Prefecture.

“It’s surprisingly close from Tokyo.” “Are nuclear power plants in Japan active?” Questions and thoughts flew around in various languages.

When personal dosimeters used to record the level of radiation were handed out, Nerious Bartkus, a 28-year-old office worker from Lithuania, pushed the operating buttons uncertainly.

“I am interested in the Chernobyl nuclear accident during the Soviet era and I wanted to visit Fukushima,” he said.

The tourism company Knot World Co based in Tokyo designed this particular tour from a desire to encourage more people to “hear the local voices and see the area’s damage and recovery” after the nuclear accident at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant.

Since the tour’s launch in February last year, some 200 people from 23 countries have participated, according to the company.

At 11 a.m. the tourists arrived at the first stop of their tour, in the town of Namie.

“We are worried that accidents may occur at nuclear plants in China,” said a Hong Kong student accompanied by two others.

The three visited a temporary shopping district set up after the accident and ordered curry dishes that used local vegetables. “We aren’t bothered as long as inspections on radioactivity are conducted,” one smiled.

Scenes that reminded of the crisis greeted the tourists. An elementary school hit by the tsunami. A farm that continues to take care of their cows despite having been exposed to the radiation. A brand-new seawall.

The tourists paid their respects in front of a memorial commemorating the victims. As they passed through a hazardous zone in their vehicle, they could see far in the distance the nuclear plant’s exhaust pipes and cranes. The dosimeters started to make a noise when it measured more than 1 microsievert per hour, causing some people to look serious.

At dusk, they walked along a street lined with cherry trees in the town of Tomioka. “I want to go back to my town,” a woman who has evacuated the town told the tourists. “But it’s not easy.”

It was half past 8 p.m. when the tourists arrived back to Tokyo’s bright lights. “I have a better understanding of the residents’ feelings,” said Pak Hin Law, a 19-year-old student from Hong Kong.

Fukushima Prefecture says 96,000 foreign tourists stayed at hotels and inns in the prefecture in 2017, which is four times the number in 2011. In February this year, an organization that promotes the prefecture’s products and tourism launched a three-day tour with English translation in areas including Naraha, another town in the vicinity of the crippled nuclear plant, to aid recovery.

However, there are numerous issues that need to be resolved regarding tours catering to foreigners such as training tour guides and providing information in various languages.

Various thoughts are voiced in Fukushima Prefecture such as, “We would really like the tourists to come not out of casual interest but to truly learn the issue,” and, “Please also turn your attention to the fact that our lives before the accident has not returned,” local officials said.

The Fukushima Daiichi plant spewed a massive amount of radioactive materials following the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami that flooded the facility on March 11, 2011.

Following the crisis, which equaled the severity of the 1986 Chernobyl disaster, some 160,000 people were evacuated at one point and over 32,000 people remained evacuated in other prefectures as of January this year.





Source : Japan Today




QFC to promote Qatar as hub of key sectors

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18 Feb 2019 – 0:30

QFC to promote Qatar as hub of key sectors

Yousuf Mohamed Al Jaida, (right) Cheif Executive officer of QFC Authority, during the panel discussion held on the sidelines of the unveiling of QFC strategic plan 2022 at Four Seasons Hotel, yesterday. FROM LEFT: Kamahl Santamaria (moderator), Faisal ibrahim Al Malki, Director, Project Manager, Msheireb Properties; Ibrahim Mohammed Hassan, Executive Director of Investment, QDB; and Ali Al Mutawaa, Chief of Enterprise and Development Officer, Aspire Zone foundation. Pic: Abdul Basit / the Peninsula

By Satish Kanady I The Peninsula

Yousuf Mohamed Al Jaida, Chief Executive Officer of QFC Authority, has said the QFC’s new strategic plans will promote Qatar as a natural hub for innovative digital, media, sports, and financial services, providing a solid basis for foreign direct investments in those growing fields. The QFC’s strategy includes an emphasis on new emerging markets that are collectively worth over $$2.1 trillion, with Qatar and the QFC well positioned to serve as a gateway to these lucrative and fast-growing economies.

Al-Jaida yesterday discussed QFC’s new strategic plans at length during a high-level panel with key national stakeholders with whom the QFC is closely collaborating to achieve its ambitious goals and realise its strategy.

Panelists included Ali Al-Mutawaa, Chief of Enterprise and Development Officer, Aspire Zone Foundation; Ibrahim Mohammed Hassan, Executive Director of Investment, Qatar Development Bank; and Faisal Ibrahim AlMalki, Director of Projects Management, Msheireb Properties.

One of the QFC’s partnership goals is to establish a new financial city in Msheireb Downtown Doha, one of the world’s smartest and most sustainable cities. Msheireb Downtown Doha is a mixed-use development spanning 310,000 square meters with the entire project targeting LEED Gold and Platinum ratings. The QFC’s planned move to the world-class development will further cement Qatar’s position as a leading international financial and business hub.

Al Jaida said that QFC’s focus on the digital, media sports and financial service industries is aligned with Qatar’s existing positioning in those fields. In the sports industry alone, Qatar has already established world-class infrastructure thanks to robust investments, and has leveraged this by hosting international sporting events, which are set to bring even more economic impetus, with the sports industry estimated to be valued at $20bn by 2023.

Yousuf Mohamed Al-Jaida, Chief Executive Officer, QFC Authority said: “By building on existing developed industries with impressive growth potential, the new strategy will promote Qatar as a natural hub or innovative digital, media, sports, and financial services thus providing a solid basis for foreign direct investments in those growing fields. In addition, the QFC’s strategy includes an emphasis on new emerging markets that are collectively worth over USD $2.1 trillion, with Qatar and the QFC well positioned to serve as a gateway to these lucrative and fast-growing economies.”

Al-Jaida added: “We are confident that the QFC’s unique platform is well-equipped to provide the necessary framework to attract foreign investors to Qatar, and in the process continue to support the growth and diversification of the economy.”

Ali Al-Mutawaa, Chief of Enterprise and Development Officer, Aspire Zone Foundation said: “Investing in the sports sector is one of the pillars of our strategy at Aspire Zone Foundation. The QFC’s focus on sports and other important sectors underscores the growth potential of these industries in Qatar and internationally. By partnering with the QFC, we can ensure our continued cooperation in driving investments in the sports sector, in line with the Qatar National Vision 2030, which will continue to achieve significant growth beyond the 2022 FIFA World Cup. “

Faisal Ibrahim AlMalki, Director of Projects Management, Msheireb Properties, said: “Today’s event demonstrates the commitment of QFC in engaging with all the stakeholders; one thing which will be even easier and achievable when they are all running their operations from within Msheireb Downtown Doha soon. Our project is the new civic hub in the country and the destination for business, living, and leisure. The move of QFC and its operations back to the center of Doha reflects the confidence they have in our infrastructure and is foretelling of the enhanced quality and integrated services to be offered to the public.”


CBU issues 100,000-soums banknote into circulation

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CBU issues 100,000-soums banknote into circulation

Tashkent, Uzbekistan ( — Central Bank of Uzbekistan will introduce 100,000-soum banknotes into circulation, the regulator said in a statement.

The bank said that it will introduce new 100,000-soums banknote into circulation from 25 February 2019.

The regulator said that new banknote will have size of 144 to 78 mm and printed on protected paper.

The Central Bank said the banknote will have watermark in form of Uzbekistan’s emblem and number “100,000” in right side on white field. There is an image of monument of Mirzo Ulugbek on front of the banknote.

On the left side of the white field, there is a security threat with a 3D effect.

On the backside of the banknote, the image of Mirzo Ulugbek Observatory was placed. There is also a map of Uzbekistan with location of Samarkand, where Mirzo Ulugbek lived and worked.

Source : UzDaily