Published: February 22, 2016

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Daily news on Saudi Arabian and regional developments provided by our partner, the Saudi-US Trade Group ( To keep up with “everything Saudi” be sure to subscribe to the SUSTG News Review through the Web site [Link]. Also check for additional related news reporting.

News, analysis, and more

Interview with Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al Jubeir on Syrian War
Der Spiegel | Samiha Shafy and Bernhard Zand | 2.22.2016
We expressed our readiness to join the US-led, international coalition against Daesh with special forces. All of this, however, is still in the discussion phase …

Lebanese Trade Accusations Over Saudi Aid Suspension
ABC/AP | Zeina Karam | 2.21.2016
Lebanese politicians traded accusations Saturday over the decision by Saudi Arabia to halt deals worth $4 billion aimed at equipping and supporting Lebanese security forces, …

Saudi Arabia accuses 32 people of spying for Iran
Al Arabiya English | 2.21.2016
The Specialized Criminal Court of Riyadh on Sunday presented a list of accusations prepared by the Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution (BIP) against 32 …

Saudi prince says offer of troops reflects unease over Syria
Associated Press | Aya Batrawy | 2.22.2016
The prince said that because the majority of victims of terrorist acts are Muslims, “it is our responsibility as Muslim countries to play the primary …

Saudi oil minister to face rival U.S. producers as price rout bites
Reuters | Luc Cohen | 2.21.2016
During his keynote on Tuesday at the annual IHS CERAWeek conference in Houston, Naimi will be addressing US wildcatters and executives who are stuck …

Saudi Film “Barakah Yoqabil Barakah” Wins at Berlin Film Festival 2016
Asharq Al-Awsat | Mohammed Rouda | 2.22.2016
Sabbagh has previously called his movie a “coming of age story rather than a romantic comedy,” and said “my film is about public space, it’s …

Free treatment for obese citizens, expats
Saudi Gazette | 2.22.2016
Fifty hospitals and health centers all over the Kingdom will participate in a nationwide program titled “Obesity: The Silent Ghost” to fight the rising rate …

Hotel stays now OK for Saudi women without male guardian | Suleiman al Asad | 2.21.2016
The Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage has ratified a law allowing women to put up at hotels by themselves, amid frowns from the …

DigitalGlobe and Saudi government sign joint venture on satellite imaging constellation
Space News | Peter B. de Selding | 2.22.2016
Westminster, Colorado-based DigitalGlobe operates a fleet of large high-resolution satellites whose imagery is sold worldwide. The company’s principal customer is the U.S. government, through a …

Boost for Saudi-made defense equipment
Arab News | Mohammed Rasooldeen | 2.21.2016
Assistant Defense Minister Gen. Mohammed Al-Ayesh said Saudi Arabia plans to produce at least 10 percent of the military requirements locally and thereby reduce costs …

Anonymous took down several government websites of Saudi Arabia
Security Affairs | Pierluigi Paganini | 2.22.2016
The #OpNimr campaign was launched in September 2015 to protest continuous violations of human rights. Anonymous targeted Saudi websites is in response to the death sentence handed …

Saudi Arabia’s residents can now report crime through an app
Al Arabiya English | 2.21.2016
It’s now easier for citizens and expatriates in Saudi Arabia to report crime thanks to an app launched Friday by the Public Security Department. …

Plan to merge small local Haj companies
Saudi Gazette | Saeed Al-Mansour | 2.22.2016
The minister said that the number of domestic pilgrims is determined by Mina’s limited geographical area which can not be extended according to the Shariah ..





Regional and related topics

Airstrikes cutting into Islamic State’s cash supply, U.S. says
Los Angeles Times | Brian Bennett and W.J. Hennigan | 2.22.2016
Islamic State’s finances have been squeezed by falling oil prices and airstrikes on oil production sites and cash hoards, forcing salary cuts for its fighters …

Syria conflict: Homs and Damascus bomb blasts kill 140
BBC News | 2.22.2016
Bomb blasts in the Syrian cities of Homs and Damascus have left at least 140 people dead, monitors and state media say. …

The Cybersecurity Skills Shortage
The Cipher Brief | Luke Penn-Hall | 2.22.2016
According to Jon Olstik from Enterprise Strategy Group, in 2016 “46% of organizations now claim that they have a problematic shortage of cybersecurity skills representing …

Iraq’s Abadi keeps Iran at arm’s length in war on Islamic State
Reuters | Maher Chmaytelli | 2.22.2016
Abadi has begun to push for reconciliation between Iraq’s Shi’ites and Sunnis, and for better relations with Sunni Arab neighbors like Saudi Arabia, they said. …

Moderates could gain influence over choice of next leader in Iran vote
Reuters | Babak Dehghanpisheh | 2.22.2016
In terms of numbers, hardliners are almost certain to have the upper hand. The Guardian Council, a hardliner-dominated government body which reviews the eligibility of …

The relationship between stocks and oil prices
Brookings Institution | Ben Bernanke | 2.22.2016
Much of this positive correlation can be explained by the tendency of stocks and oil prices to react in the same direction to common factors, …

Boeing Cleared for Iran Talks After $27 Billion Airbus Haul
Bloomberg Business | Julie Johnsson, Rick Clough and Deena Kamel | 2.22.2016
The U.S. government cleared the manufacturer to begin talking with approved Iranian carriers about their fleet needs, a first step toward entering the country’s resurgent …

Saudi-Russia Oil Deal Can’t Stop Biggest Bull Exodus in 7 Months
Bloomberg Business | Moming Zhou | 2.22.2016
Meanwhile, U.S. oil supplies keep swelling. They climbed to 504.1 million barrels in the week ended Feb. 12, the highest level in 86 years …

China Builds Middle East Ties Through Business
Aljazeera | Alice Su | 2.22.2016
Xi and his recently established Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank have already pledged $100 billion in financing for the One Belt, One Road initiative, an ambitious vision …

Look Out, Special Operators in Syria, the Internet Has Spotted You and That’s a Problem
Defense One | Harry Oppenheimer and Aaron Picozzi | 2.22.2016
Why does the expansion of an isolated airstrip warrant attention? It is not only the improvement of the airstrip, but also how it was discovered. …

Turkish army presses crackdown on Kurdish militants, Europe worried over rights
Reuters | Humeyra Pamuk | 2.22.2016
Turkey’s military said on Monday it had killed 14 militants in a drive against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in the southeast as an …

Al Qaeda militants seize southern Yemen town, kill militia leader: residents
Reuters | Mohammed Mukhashaf | 2.22.2016
The coastal city and surrounding district, in Abyan province, is home to more than 30,000 people and is an important geographic link between the major …

Afghan Army abandons another district in Helmand
Long War Journal | Bill Roggio | 2.22.2016
Yesterday, the Afghan National Army withdrew from two bases in the district of Musa Qala in Helmand. Today, we learn that the Afghan Army also …


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