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Saudi Arabia forms 34 countries alliance to fight terrorism

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New Delhi: Saudi Arabia declared on Tuesday that it formed an Islamic military alliance with 34 countries to counter terrorism. This alliance will hold joint operations from the Kingdom’s capital Riyadh.

Saudi Arabia’s press agency stated that alliance has been formed because there is a need to fight the terrorism with all means and all collaborations to eliminate it.

Press statement further added that Islam forbids corruption and destruction in the world and terrorism violates human life and dignity, especially the right to life and the right to security.

This alliance has members like Pakistan, Egypt, Turkey, Libya and Yemen etcetera. African nations like Nigeria are also part of the alliance. 

However, the regional rival Shiite Iran is not the member of this coalition.

Saudi defense Minister Mohammed Bin Salam said that this group will not be limited to fight against Islamic terrorist outfits only. He added that a joint operation center will be based in Riyadh and from there the military operations to fight terrorism will be conducted.

Most of the gulf countries are part of this alliance except Oman. Turkey is the only country that is also a part of Nato. Iran and troubled Syria are the biggest missing names therein.

Saudi Arabia already is part of the operations against Shiite Houthi rebels in Yemen. This group also marks the start of an initiative taken by the Islamic countries against terrorism.

ISIS is a huge power in the middle east and this group sooner or later will turn against it. Saudi Arabia not only took the leadership role in the formation of this alliance, but also it will be leading the joint operation held by the alliance.

(Inputs from agencies)

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Saudi Arabia’s Sovereign Fund Invested $1 Billion In An American Electric Car Manufacturer

Saudi Arabia's 33-year-old Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has talked about using the PIF to help diversify the economy of the kingdom.

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Derek Jenkins, VP of Design at Lucid Motors, introduces the alpha prototype of the Lucid Air at the 2017 New York International Auto Show in New York City. VOA

Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund invested $1 billion Monday in an American electric car manufacturer just weeks after Tesla CEO Elon Musk earlier claimed the kingdom would help his own firm go private.

Tesla stock dropped Monday on reaction to the news, the same day that the Saudi fund announced it had taken its first loan, an $11 billion borrowing from global banks as it tries to expand its investments.

The Saudi Public Investment Fund said it would invest the $1 billion in Newark, California-based Lucid Motors.

Lucid Motors
Lucid Motors. Flickr

The investment “will provide the necessary funding to commercially launch Lucid’s first electric vehicle, the Lucid Air, in 2020,” the sovereign wealth fund said in a statement. “The company plans to use the funding to complete engineering development and testing of the Lucid Air, construct its factory in Arizona, enter production for the Lucid Air to begin the global rollout of the company’s retail strategy starting in North America.”

Lucid issued a statement quoting Peter Rawlinson, its chief technology officer, welcoming the investment.

“At Lucid, we will demonstrate the full potential of the electric-connected vehicle in order to push the industry forward,” he said.

The decision comes after Musk on Aug. 7 tweeted that he had “funding secured” to take Tesla private. Investors pushed Tesla’s shares up 11 percent in a day, boosting its valuation by $6 billion.

Lucid Motors
Electric Car

There are multiple reports that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the disclosure, including asking board members what they knew about Musk’s plans. Experts say regulators likely are investigating if Musk was truthful in the tweet about having the financing set for the deal. Musk later said the Saudi Public Investment Fund would be investing in the firm, something Saudi officials never comment on.

Meanwhile Monday, the sovereign wealth fund known by the acronym PIF said it had taken its first loan, an $11 billion borrowing. It did not say how it would use the money, only describing it as going toward “general corporate purposes.”

Also Read: Electric Cars: The Newest Trend in India

The Las Vegas-based Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute estimates the Saudi fund has holdings of $250 billion. Those include a $3.5 billion stake in the ride-sharing app Uber.

Saudi Arabia’s 33-year-old Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has talked about using the PIF to help diversify the economy of the kingdom, which relies almost entirely on money made from its oil sales. (VOA)