Here are some fun reads from the Gulf region.
– Saudi Arabia, the top OPEC exporter, has passed its highest budget ever, reaching $144 billion while forecasting a deficit of $18.7 billion.
– To combat the Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Northern Yemen, the Yemen government has apparently been receiving US intelligence and support (see New York Times also). Meanwhile, the Saudi air raids hit a town in North Yemen, killing 54 people.
– The government of Yemen received six prisoners that were held without trial for years at the US military prison in Guantanamo Bay.
– Last week, Saudi foreign minister Prince Saad al-Faisal said that Hizbollah’s arms denied true sovereignty to Lebanon. While Hizbollah doesn’t take the statement negatively, diplomats have said the message was meant for Iran and not for Syria, a country with whom Saudi has improving relations. Prince Faisal also criticized the US support of Israel.