2004 News Story

Council of Ministers meeting: Madrid bombings, Syrian riots, NHRA, mideast, tourism

Deputy Prime Minister and Commander of the National Guard Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz today chaired the regular weekly meeting of the Council of Ministers, which reiterated the Kingdom's condemnation of last Thursday’s terrorist bombings in Madrid that led to the killing and injuring of hundreds of people, stressing that this disgraceful, inhuman and criminal act contravenes the simplest rules of human decency and conscience. The Cabinet again expressed deepest condolences from the Saudi government and people to the government and people of Spain, and to the families of the innocent victims. The Cabinet also denounced the regrettable riots and hooliganism which took place in Syria, in the governorate of Hasakah and certain cities, praying to God Almighty to preserve Syria's security, stability and prosperity.

The Cabinet then welcomed the establishment of the National Human Rights Association (NHRA), and wished it every success, noting that its activities will derive from the Holy Qur’an and the Sunnah (the traditions of the Prophet) and adding that both Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd bin Abdulaziz and the Crown Prince have guaranteed that NHRA will have its own autonomy and administrative and financial independence along with full authority as regards human rights in the Kingdom.
The Crown Prince informed the Cabinet of consultations recently held with a number of leaders and officials of brotherly and friendly countries, which focused on the latest international developments, especially the security situation in Palestine and in Iraq. The Cabinet reiterated the Kingdom's condemnation of Israel's continuing aggression against the Palestinian people, calling on the international community to shoulder its responsibility to halt Israeli massacres, save the Palestinian people and confront Israel's arrogance and insistence on continued violation of Palestinian human rights without any respect for international legitimacy and the United Nations resolutions.
Turning to domestic affairs, the Cabinet passed a number of resolutions, including approval of a general strategy for developing the nation’s tourism to be carried out by the Supreme Commission for Tourism (SCT), noting that the Kingdom’s tourist industry enjoys security, stability, and proper infrastructure, along with cultural, natural, and economic grounds, and describing it not only as rewarding, vital, and productive, but also as an important contributor to the Saudi economy, occupying an advanced position, and expected to create 489,000 jobs, a number that could reach as high as 2.3 million jobs.