SAUDI ARABIA – Saudi Telecom’s digital payments business plans Gulf expansion, says CEO (Al Arabiya)

The digital payments business of Saudi Arabia’s Saudi Telecom Company (STC), stc pay, is in talks with Gulf regulators to seek approval to operate in the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Bahrain, its CEO said on Monday.

SAUDI ARABIA – Saudi FM denies Netanyahu NEOM visit: ‘There were no Israelis present’ (Al Arabiya)

Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan denied Israeli media reports Monday that a meeting occurred between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

IRAN- Iran security forces raid homes of dozens of Baha’is in several cities: Report (Al Arabiya)

Security forces in multiple Iranian cities on Sunday raided the homes of dozens of Baha’i citizens – the most persecuted religious minority in Iran – confiscating their personal belongings, the Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) reported.

G20/WTO – WTO official urges G20 boost trade financing for developing countries (Al Arabiya)

Group of 20 major economies should work to provide trillions of dollars in trade financing for developing countries to ensure the recovery of the global economy from the COVID-19 pandemic, a top official with the World Trade Organization said on Saturday.

CHINA – China plans new policies to encourage more births, address aging population (Al Arabiya)

China is planning to include new measures to encourage more births and address its rapidly ageing population as part of its new 2021-2025 “five-year plan,” state media reported on Monday.

USA – US election: GOP Senator says time for Trump to start a transition (Al Arabiya)

“There has to be an end to President Donald Trump’s fight to reverse the outcome of the Nov. 3 election, which the incumbent lost to Joe Biden, Republican Senator Kevin Cramer said on Sunday.

G20/SAUDI ARABIA – Mohammed bin Rashid: G20 summit testified to Saudi Arabia’s pioneering role (Al Arabiya)

Dubai’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum said Saturday’s virtual G20 summit testified to Saudi Arabia’s “global pioneering role and its keen support to global efforts to overcome all challenges facing nations of the world,” Emirates News Agency (WAM) reported.

LEBANON – In Lebanon, army courts, plainclothes officers target protesters (Al Arabiya)

Khaldoun Jaber was taking part in an anti-government protest near the presidential palace outside Beirut last November when several Lebanese intelligence officers in plainclothes approached and forcibly took him away.

ISRAEL/GAZA – Israel hits Hamas targets in Gaza following rocket attack (Al Arabiya)

Israel said Sunday its military struck Hamas targets in Gaza in response to a rocket attack launched from the Palestinian enclave.

AUSTRALIA/AFGHANISTAN – Morrison calls allegations of Australian atrocities in Afghanistan ‘disturbing’ (Al Arabiya)

Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Saturday that the findings of a report that the country’s special forces allegedly killed 39 unarmed prisoners and civilians in Afghanistan were “disturbing and distressing.”