4.7-MAGNITUDE EARTHQUAKE HITS KERMANSHAH, WESTERN IRAN

An earthquake measuring 4.7 on the Richter scale struck near the Kawara region in Kermanshah province, western Iran, today, Sunday, according to “Russia Today”. The Iranian “Tasnim” agency stated that the earthquake occurred at a depth of 8 kilometers below the surface of the earth at 8:21 this morning, local time, and residents in most neighboring cities and villages felt this tremor.” The CEO of the Red Crescent Society in Kermanshah said that the Operations Coordination and Control Center sent specialized teams to the Kahwara region to assess potential damage, while there was no immediate news of damage caused by the earthquake.

Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

BASSIL FROM BYBLOS: WE CROSSED PATHS WITH OTHER PARLIAMENTARY BLOCS OVER THE NAME OF AZOUR, AMONG OTHER CANDIDATES

Free Patriotic Movement Chief, MP Gebran Bassil, announced that the Movement has intersected with other parliamentary blocs on the name of Jihad Azour as a presidential candidate, among other names that FPM considered appropriate and not provocative, and hence gave its approval and no objection to their reaching presidency. He considered that “the intersection over more than one name gives more flexibility and constitutes a positive and important development, so no one accuses FPM of obstruction.” Bassil also deemed that having consensus over the name of a presidential candidate and the agreement of the main blocs to support him and give him the necessary representation, denotes compensation for those who lack access to Christian representation. “In the event of a call for a session to elect a president, the Free Patriotic Movement will vote for the name that was agreed upon instead of voting by a white ballot paper,” he affirmed. Bassil called for “taking advantage of the historical moment and avoid wasting the opportunity of regional rapprochement around us,” and to work on “unifying the national project so that we all succeed as Lebanese.” “The only remaining victory is winning the state-building battle; after we won the battle against terrorism, and we achieved balance with Israel,” he underscored. Bassil’s words came during his speech at the Movement’s dinner banquet organized in the area of Jbeil on Saturday evening, in the presence of former President Michel Aoun.

Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

FADLALLAH FROM OSLO: MOSQUES IN THE WEST HAVE A GREAT ROLE IN BUILDING CIVILIZED, HUMAN LIFE

Religious Scholar Ali Fadlallah participated in the mass celebration that was held in the Norwegian capital, Oslo, on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the inauguration of the Tawheed Mosque there. The celebration was attended by a large number of scholars and cultural and intellectual figures who came from various European countries, alongside a large number of Arab and Islamic community members residing aboard. In his delivered speech, Fadlallah referred to the importance of mosques in Western countries and the great role they play, considering that “Al-Tawheed Mosque in Oslo has played an effective role over the past ten years in building bridges of communication, openness, and dialogue, and is working to spread awareness and kindness among people.” He congratulated the custodians of the Tawheed Mosque for their successes at all levels, underlining “the importance of abiding by the laws of the Western countries in which Muslims live, maintaining their security and stability, and contributing to building their societies in a way that enriches life and builds people while preserving their privacy.” At the end of the ceremony, Fadlallah honored Mr. Shamshad Al-Radwi and Sheikh Mahmoud Jalloul and presented them with memorial shields in appreciation of their cultural and social efforts in Norway.

Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

Hamed bin Zayed attends Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence class of 2023 commencement ceremony

ABU DHABI, 4th June, 2023 (WAM) In the presence of H.H. Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI) today hosted Commencement for the Class of 2023, its second cohort, strengthening AI talent capacity and contributing solutions to global challenges, including health, education, and climate. The MBZUAI commencement ceremony celebrated 59 students graduating with a master’s in computer vision (CV) and machine learning (ML), along with its first-ever natural language processing (NLP) graduates. Hosted at the Abu Dhabi Energy Center, the event was attended by Khalifa bin Mohammed bin Khalid Al Nahyan, UAE Ambassador to Jordan, Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, President-Designate of COP28 UAE and Chairman of MBZUAI’s Board of Trustees, and Professor Eric Xing, MBZUAI President and University Professor, in addition to Members of the Board of Trustees and university faculty. Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber said: “The importance of AI is undisputed, which is why MBZUAI continues to push the boundaries of this technology through advanced research, strategic industry collaborations, and, of course, by empowering the next generation of AI experts. I am confident that the Class of 2023 will make a profound social and economic impact and develop tangible AI solutions that will help to overcome some of society’s major challenges, particularlyin the areas of climate, healthcare, and education. AI adoption across industries will help meet the nation’s goals by accelerating the diversification and growth of the UAE’s economy while simultaneously unlocking significant increases in energy efficiency and emission reductions within hard-to-abate sectors. “This December, the UAE will host COP28 a task we approach with humility, a clear sense of responsibility, and a great sense of urgency. We must use every tool available to us to make transformational progress across the climate agenda and AI is one of the most powerful tools at our disposal.” Among the 59 students who graduated, 32 majored in ML, 20 CV, and seven in NLP. The Class of 2023 comprised 25 nationalities, hailing from countries including China, UAE, India, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Hungary, Italy, and Jordan, highlighting the university’s commitment to cultivating a diverse and inclusive learning environment that attracts top talent from around the world. More than half the graduating class undertook a voluntary industry internship to prepare them to go on and become creators and changemakers in healthcare, technology, energy, transport, and government. Al Jaber concluded by saying: “In a world that has never been more complex or more open to opportunity, you the Class of 2023 – are ready to drive forward solutions that will advance the UAE and the world.” The Class of 2023 also had 17 academic papers published or accepted at major conferences and journals of international standing, including the IEEE/CVF Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR 2023), Journal of Physics Energy, and IEEE Access journal. Several of them were invited to deliver workshops at leading conferences, including Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL 2022), the Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS 2022), and International Conference on Learning Representations (ICLR 2023). The ceremony included an MBZUAI Research Showcase, where faculty and students presented current projects highlighting the university’s three key research pillars – health, climate, and education. Guests and attendees gained insight into the vital exploration taking place at MBZUAI and the importance of these pioneering projects utilising AI to solve humankind’s most pressing challenges. MBZUAI President and University Professor Eric Xing said: “This is a pivotal time as wider public interest turns its attention to AI and with the UAE’s pace, scale, and ambition as a young nation, it offers a cosmopolitan hub of innovation that attracts the world’s greatest minds in the field. I extend my congratulations to the Class of 2023 as they embark on the next stage of their journey. I encourage them to become RenAIssanceScholars, stay curious continue to learn, to explore and to understand the world but most importantly to think deeply about how they will use the potential of AI to make a difference in the world.” Students from the Class of 2023 also represented MBZUAI in top national and international hackathons, achieving first and second places at IEEE SLT international hackathon (Qatar Computing Research Institute), G42’s HackforSpace Hackathon, GITEX x AI-everything High Flyer challenge, Pioneers 4.0 Hackathon Series (MoIAT and EDGE), Cisco Power of the Future Challenge, Dubai Roads and Transport Authority’s (RTA) Transport Hackathon, and Agritech Hackathon (Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA), among others.

Source: Emirates News Agency (WAM)

Ministry of Finance participates in 10th Global Forum Competent Authorities Conference on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes

ABU DHABI, 4th June, 2023 (WAM) — The Ministry of Finance recently participated in the 10th Global Forum Competent Authorities Conference on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes, held in Tbilisi, Georgia. More than 160 specialists from 77 countries attended the conference to share their practical experiences in the exchange of information for tax purposes on request (EOIR) and the automatic exchange of financial account information (AEOI), in addition to the latest educational and guidance tools issued by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The Ministry’s delegation included Asma Al Zarooni, Head of Exchange of Tax Information Section, and Reem Al Suwaidi, International Relations Executive. Several senior officials from the OECD and member countries of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes also participated in the conference. The conference discussed the latest developments regarding the exchange of information, tools and mechanisms issued by the forum pertaining to the requirements of the real beneficiary, the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) system, exchange of information for tax purposes on request (EOIR), and the protection and confidentiality of information. The conference also presented case studies of several countries and their experiences with regards to exchanging information on request including Tunisia, Georgia, Germany and Singapore. Furthermore, participants discussed the future of the automatic exchange of financial account information (AEOI) on various types of income, as well as the importance of the CRS as a tool for combating tax evasion while ensuring its effectiveness and accurate implementation through the compliance frameworks set by different countries. The UAE became a member of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes in 2010 Hazem Hussein

Source: Emirates News Agency (WAM)

Bodour Al Qasimi appoints Mariam Al-Obaidli as Managing Director of Kalimat Group

class=”slides SHARJAH, 4th June, 2023 (WAM) — Sheikha Bodour bint Sultan Al Qasimi, the Founder and CEO of Kalimat Group, has issued an administrative decision appointing Mariam Al-Obaidli as the Managing Director of Kalimat Group. This appointment aims to ensure the group’s continued commitment to delivering high-quality Arabic publications that enhance the richness of Arabic libraries. Al-Obaidli has 12 years of experience in the fields of management, marketing and publishing in the creative sector, and her professional expertise comprises a multitude of achievements, particularly in spearheading customer-centric campaigns. She also previously oversaw a dedicated team in the sales and promotion of publishing rights and possesses extensive experience in managing translated content rights for the global market. Prior to joining Kalimat Group, Al-Obaidli led the launch of the new brand identity of the Emirates Publishers Association (EPA) at local, regional, and global levels. Kalimat Group, established in Sharjah in 2007, encompasses multiple specialised publishing houses within its scope. Its primary objective is to enrich the Arabic library with a diverse collection of books, illustrated children’s books, comics, literature, educational and translated books. To achieve that, Kalimat Group recruits renowned authors and professional translators from different cultures across the globe Hazem Hussein

Source: Emirates News Agency (WAM)