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The ministry issued 12

million visas last year.

Of these one-and-a-half

million were visit visas

and half a million were

business visas.

Abdulrahman Al-Yousef

Deputy Foreign Minister

for Consular Affairs

and Director General

of Visa Administration

Personally, I am particularly worried about

autonomous drones being used for terror and

automated cyber attacks by both criminals and state


Miles Brundage

A researcher at Oxford University’s Future of Humanity Institute




P2 <<





Issue No: 14740 ISSN (1320-0326 )


Saudi Riyal 2

THURSDAY 22. 2. 18 JAMAD II 6 1439

A window on Saudi culture and heritage

The King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies took foreign students on a tour to the ongo-

ing 32nd Janadriya Heritage and Culture Festival on the outskirts of Riyadh. The students admired the

cultures, traditions, heritage, folklore, popular games and cuisine of various regions of the Kingdom.

They toured the pavilions of Qassim, Al-Baha, Jazan, Makkah and Al-Jouf.


Experts sound alarm over ‘malicious use’ of AI


Artificial intelligence

(AI) could be deployed by dic-

tators, criminals and terrorists

to manipulate elections and use

drones in terrorist attacks, more

than two dozen experts said

Wednesday as they sounded the

alarm over misuse of the technol-


In a 100-page analysis, they

outlined a rapid growth in cyber

crime and the use of “bots” to in-

terfere with news gathering and

penetrate social media among a

host of plausible scenarios in the

next five to 10 years.

“Our report focuses on ways

in which people could do delib-

erate harm with AI,” said Sean O

hEigeartaigh, Executive Director

of the Cambridge Center for the

Study of Existential Risk.

“AI may pose new threats,

or change the nature of existing

threats, across physical, political

In a 100-page analysis, they outlined a rapid growth in cyber crime and

the use of “bots” to interfere with news gathering and penetrate social

media among a host of plausible scenarios in the next five to 10 years.

and cyber security,” he told AFP.

The common practice, for

example, of “phishing” — send-

ing emails seeded with malware

or designed to finagle valuable

personal data — could become

far more dangerous, the report


In the political sphere, un-

scrupulous or autocratic leaders

can already use advanced tech-

nology to sift through mountains

of data collected from omnipres-

ent surveillance networks to spy

on their own people.

“Dictators could more quick-

ly identify people who might be

planning to subvert a regime, lo-

cate them, and put them in prison

before they act,” the report said.

Likewise, targeted propagan-

da along with cheap, highly be-

lievable fake videos have become

powerful tools for manipulating

public opinion “on previously

unimaginable scales”.

An indictment handed down

by US special prosecutor Rob-

ert Mueller last week detailed a

vast operation to sow social di-

vision in the United States and

influence the 2016 presidential

election in which so-called “troll

farms” manipulated thousands of

social network bots, especially

on Facebook and Twitter.

Another danger zone on the

horizon is the proliferation of

drones and robots that could

be repurposed to crash autono-

mous vehicles, deliver missiles,

or threaten critical infrastructure

to gain ransom. “Personally, I am

particularly worried about au-

tonomous drones being used for

terror and automated cyber at-

tacks by both criminals and state

groups,” said co-author Miles

Brundage, a researcher at Oxford

University’s Future of Humanity



KSA issued 12m visas last year

Saudi Gazette


While there has

been a reported exodus of expat

workers because of dependent’s

fee, some 12 million foreigners ar-

rived in the Kingdom last year for

work, visit, business and pilgrim-


Deputy Foreign Minister for

Consular Affairs and Director

General of Visa Administration

Abdulrahman Al-Yousef said the

ministry issued 12 million visas

last year.

Of these one-and-a-half mil-

lion were visit visas and half a

million were business visas, Al-

Watan Arabic daily reported on


Addressing the Saudi Meet-

ings Industry Convention (SMIC),

he said a business visa is valid for

two years and multiple visits.

According to the General

Authority for Statistics (GaStat)

issued last month, more than

94,000 expat workers left Saudi

Arabia in the third quarter of 2017.

The number of expat workers

in the private and public sectors

Cycling club receives backlash

after accident kills four

By Mohammad Al-Kadmi

and Fuad Saleh

Okaz/Saudi Gazette


The parents of the

cyclists who were run over by

a speeding driver blamed their

club for putting their children

in harm’s way by not following

safety regulations.

In a horrific accident, four

members of Al-Yarmouk Cycling

Club were killed and six were

seriously injured when a car hit

them during their regular cycling

excursion in Abu Uraish gover-

norate on Monday evening.

“It was a regular day just like

any other day for us. A group of

up to 30 cyclists gather everyday

at a point and ride our cycles in

a side lane because there are no

lanes specified for us,” said Mah-

moud Ibrahim, 15, who was in-

jured in his pelvis.

Fuad Saleh, 16, said he lost

his consciousness when he was

hit by the car and woke up hours

later in the hospital.

Tragedy struck the cycling

club members twice that day.

Hearing about the accident, four

members of the club got into a

car to go to the hospital. But they

were hit by a truck and suffered

serious injuries. They were also

rushed to a hospital.

Waleed Al-Sayed, who has

been a bicyclist for over 25 years,

said he is heartbroken by the loss

of some of his friends in the ac-


Khalid Hazazi, a relative of

one of the victims, blamed Al-

Yarmouk Club for not taking

safety measures.

“Many of the victims are my

students in school. There was

no ambulance around and there

were no traffic police to organize

the traffic,” said Hazazi.

Ahmad Abdullah said his

15-year-old son fractured his foot

in the accident.

“I won’t let my son go to the

club anymore. They do not fol-

low the basic safety regulations.

The members of that club rep-

resent the Kingdom regionally.

The organizers should have been

more aware of the dangers they

are putting our sons in,” said


The scene of the horrific accident in Jazan’s Abu Uraish governorate.

— Courtesy: Al Arabiya English

was 10.79 million in Q2 compared

to 10.6 million in Q3, a decline of

approximately 94,390 workers be-

tween July and September.

At the same time, a total of

509,180 work visas were issued

during Q3 of 2017. The govern-

ment sector issued 22.3% visas

and the private sector 39.9%.

Some 37.8% visas were issued to

recruit domestic workers, the re-

port noted.

Expatriates are leaving be-

cause of the imposition of depen-

dents fees and foreign workers


SMEs to have

more stake

in private

health sector

Saudi Gazette report


Minister of Health

Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah approved

the executive regulations to

help private health firms im-

prove services and facilities, the

Saudi Press Agency reported on


The minister approved the

regulations after making drastic

amendments and bringing new

health services and activities un-

der its purview.

According to the regulations,

there will be an enhanced con-

tribution of small and medium

enterprises (SMEs) in the private

health sector.

Some of the functions of the

Ministry of Health (MoH) will

also be assigned to other govern-

ment agencies and private sector

companies to promote the prin-

ciple of participation.

The regulations are aimed

at achieving a balance between

stimulating and empowering the

private sector so as to enable it to

contribute to enhancing the qual-

ity of health services.

The MoH said that the regu-

lations include a mechanism

for the classification of private

health firms. The classification

will be published periodically for

the benefit of citizens.

Some health activities have

been added to the regulations.

These include the supporting

medical services such as quick

care centers, centers for trans-

portation through ambulance,

addiction treatment and rehabili-

tation centers, mobile medical

clinics, independent home care

and communicative medicine.

All these are aimed at

strengthening the level of inno-

vative medical services and rais-

ing the contribution of SMEs.

The ministry’s unveiling of

the regulations coincides with

its launching of innovative pro-

grams for the electronic licens-

ing system and the self-assess-

ment system for private health


The minister directed spe-

cialists in the ministry to contin-

ue to work on enacting rules and

regulations that serve the health

sector and citizens.

He also called for reviewing

the executive regulations period-

ically so as to keep pace with the

latest developments and practic-

es in the health sector.

GACA to invite

new tenders

to operate

and manage

Jeddah airport

Saudi Gazette report


The General Au-

thority of Civil Aviation (GACA)

has terminated the contract that

it awarded to Changi Airports

International (CAI)–led consor-

tium to manage and operate the

new King Abdulaziz Internation-

al Airport (KAIA).

“New tenders will be invited

in a public bidding, which will be

announced shortly. This proce-

dure will not affect the timetable

set for the initial opening and ex-

perimental operation of the new

airport in May this year,” Al-Sabq

reported quoting GACA sources.

GACA emphasized that the

decision is consistent with the

terms and conditions of the con-

tract signed between the two par-


CAI, a wholly owned subsid-

iary of Singapore’s Changi Air-

port Group, had been picked in

June 2017 from among other bid-

ders such as Malaysia Airports

Holdings and France’s Aeroports

de Paris Management.

The consortium on Wednes-

day confirmed that it has received

notice from GACA terminating

the agreement for the operation

and management of the new King

Abdullah Aziz International Air-

port in Jeddah. “The consortium

notes that GACA has chosen to

terminate the agreement for the

operation and management of

the new King Abdullah Aziz In-

ternational Airport, Jeddah, in

accordance with the concession

agreement,” said a press release

issued by the consortium.