Report: Small arms imports by Middle East nations increased 84 percent in one year

Report: Small arms imports by Middle East nations increased 84 percent in one year

by WorldTribune Staff, June 13, 2016 Small arms imports by Middle East nations surged by 84 percent between 2012 and 2013, according to a new survey. The UAE and Saudi Arabia accounted for the largest budget increases, with Saudi tripling its import of small arms from $54 million in 2012 to $161 million a year […]

Thou shalt not use thy neighbor’s WiFi: Dubai authorities issue fatwa

Thou shalt not use thy neighbor’s WiFi: Dubai authorities issue fatwa

Special to WorldTribune.com In Dubai, it is against Islamic Law to covet your neighbor’s WiFi. Dubai’s Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department recently published a fatwa (Muslim religious ruling) forbidding Muslims from using open WiFi networks without permission, the Associated Press reported. The department’s official statement says “there is nothing wrong in using the line […]

Saudi companies fail to make payrolls, Gulf states weigh taxes as oil prices strain economies

Saudi companies fail to make payrolls, Gulf states weigh taxes as oil prices strain economies

Special to WorldTribune.com Sinking oil prices are weighing heavily on Mideast economies. In Saudi Arabia, the construction sector has been hit hard by low oil prices as several firms with government contracts are failing to make payroll. The Riyadh government has significantly cut spending on building projects as it seeks to reduce a budget deficit […]

UAE’s new ‘Minister of Happiness’ one of 8 women in cabinet

UAE’s new ‘Minister of Happiness’ one of 8 women in cabinet

Special to WorldTribune.com The United Arab Emirates has named an official “Minister of Happiness” who will be tasked with creating “social good and satisfaction.” UAE Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid appointed Ohood Al Roumi to the post as he announced his new Cabinet on Feb. 10. Al Roumi is one of eight women in […]

Obama lectures Arab leaders on importance of being ‘responsive’ to citizens

Obama lectures Arab leaders on importance of being ‘responsive’ to citizens

Special to WorldTribune.com The U.S. president, who many critics say would rather be on the golf course than dealing with his constituents, gave Arab leaders a lecture on Feb. 8 on the importance of being “responsive” to their citizens. “As we’ve seen in the tumult across the Middle East and North Africa, when governments do […]

Saudi Arabia and Turkey weigh military action in Syria

Saudi Arabia and Turkey weigh military action in Syria

Special to WorldTribune.com Saudi Arabia and Turkey are considering sending ground troops into Syria to support rebels fighting the Russia-backed Bashar Assad regime, analysts say. “The Saudis believe that the chance of a peaceful solution for the Syrian crisis is very limited,” said Mustafa Alani of the independent Gulf Research Center. “They don’t see that […]

Gulf States jointly condemn ‘Iranian interference’ in Saudi affairs

Gulf States jointly condemn ‘Iranian interference’ in Saudi affairs

Special to WorldTribune.com Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty The Sunni Arab monarchies of the Persian Gulf have expressed support for Saudi Arabia in its diplomatic row with Iran, condemning what they described as Iranian interference in Riyadh’s internal affairs. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia accused Iran of sponsoring terrorism and warned that the kingdom was considering […]

Gulf states helping secure Saudi border with Yemen

Gulf states helping secure Saudi border with Yemen

Special to WorldTribune.com Some 1,000 troops from Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states have been deployed to Saudi Arabia. The troops, mostly from Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, were sent to Saudi’s southern border with Yemen for a border security operation against Iran-backed Houthi rebels. The rebels have launched several missiles at the Saudi southern […]

UAE, Bahrain, Sudan join Saudi in curbing ties to Iran

UAE, Bahrain, Sudan join Saudi in curbing ties to Iran

Special to WorldTribune.com Bahrain and Sudan on Jan. 4 followed Saudi Arabia’s lead in cutting diplomatic ties with Iran. United Arab Emirates said it would also downgrade its ties to Teheran. The escalating tensions between Saudi and Iran came after Riyadh’s execution of a Shi’ite Muslim cleric. Iranian protesters stormed the Saudi embassy in Teheran […]

Happy (post-shutdown) days are here again: Obama OKs missile sales

Happy (post-shutdown) days are here again: Obama OKs missile sales

Special to WorldTribune.com WASHINGTON — The United States, ending its government shutdown, has resumed arms sales to the Middle East. The administration of President Barack Obama has approved billions of dollars worth of weapons and munitions to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. The Defense Department notified Congress that the two Gulf Cooperation Council […]