- Riyadh, January 11, 2010, SPA


  The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud chaired the Cabinet session held today at Al-Yamamah Palace in Riyadh.


  At the outset of the session, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques briefed the Cabinet on the contacts, meetings and consultations that took place during the last week with a number of leaders of brotherly and friendly countries and their envoys on the latest developments in the region and the world, including the talks he held with Jordanian King Abdullah II on the overall situation at Arab arena, the efforts exerted to achieve peace in the region, and Arab efforts to promote brotherly relations.


  The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques briefed the Cabinet on the messages he sent to Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Egyptian President Mohammed Hosni Mubarak and Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. He also briefed the Cabinet on the telephone call he received from Sudanese President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir as well as his meetings with Omani Minister for Foreign Affairs Yusuf bin Alawi Abdullah, German Vice-Chancellor and Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle and Chinese Minister of Commerce Chen Deming.


  The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques stressed that these meetings, contacts and messages come within the framework of consultation and rank unification to achieve Arab interests. The King praised the conformity of views among the leaders on the various regional issues. The King stressed also the need to intensify efforts towards a just and comprehensive settlement of the peace process in the region, particularly in light of regional and international actions for the revitalization of the peace process. The King also emphasized the importance of intensifying efforts to achieve comprehensive and just settlement of the conflict which, in turn, will lead to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with Al-Quds as its capital.


  In a statement to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) following the session, the Minister of Culture and Information Dr. Abdulaziz bin Mohieddin Khoja said that the Cabinet condemned the escalation of Israeli settlement policy, stressing that this escalation is a major obstacle to the resumption of the peace process and threatens efforts to revive it. In this regard, the Cabinet praised the European position which stressed the illegality of Israeli settlement policy which is a major obstacle to the resumption of the peace process.


Dr. Khoja said the Cabinet reviewed a number of issues on its agenda and issued the following decisions:


  The Cabinet approved the establishment of baselines for marine areas of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the Red Sea and Arabian Gulf in accordance with the listed geographical coordinates attached to the decision.


  The Cabinet approved changing the name of the National Commission for Wildlife Conservation and Development to become Saudi Wildlife Commission.


  The Cabinet authorized the Minister of Higher Education (or his deputy) to discuss with the Tajik side a draft memorandum of scientific and educational cooperation between the Ministry of Higher Education of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Tajikistan; and sign it.


  The Cabinet approved extending the validity of the provision of paragraph 9 of the Cabinet's decision No. 23 dated 17/01/1428 H. for a period of two years starting from 17/01/1430 H. The provision states that the percentage of Saudization applied to construction sectors shall be 5 percent.


The Cabinet approved restructuring the Board of Directors of the Irrigation and Drainage Authority in Ahsa for a period of three years as of 27/02/1431 H. under the chairmanship of the Minister of Agriculture and the membership of the following:


1- Director General of Irrigation and Drainage Authority.


2- Representative of the Ministry of Water and Electricity Eng. Ahmed bin Abdulrahman Al-Bassam.


3- Dr. Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Abdullah Al-Hamdan from King Saud University.


4- Eng. Saleh bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Barrak from the private sector.


5- Eng. Mahdi bin Yassin Al-Ramadan from the private sector.


  The Cabinet approved the addition of the sectors of Interior Ministry (Facility Security, High Authority for Industrial Security, Command and Control Center) to the membership of the Permanent National Committee of Radiological and Nuclear Emergency Response and the National Radiological and Nuclear Emergency Response Team.


The Cabinet approved a number of appointments at the fourteenth rank as follows:


1- Ahmad bin Abdulmohsen bin Ahmed Al-Madhi as Security Adviser at the Interior Ministry.


2- Jurayyd bin Metq bin Rashid Al-Anzi as Assistant Undersecretary of the Governorate at Tabuk Region Governorate.


3- Mohammed bin Abdullah bin Saad Al-Hagbani as Assistant Undersecretary of the Governorate for Security Affairs at Tabuk Region Governorate.


4- Eng. Fahad bin Mohammed bin Ibrahim Al-Ghanim as Director General of Projects and Maintenance at the General Presidency for Youth Welfare.