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Saturday, 20 June 2020

Austria: Saudi religious dialogue centre leaves Vienna

The Vienna-based religious dialogue centre funded by Saudi Arabia, will leave Austria and move to Switzerland.

King Abdullah Bin Abdulazi’s International Centre for Religious and Cultural Dialogue (KAICIID) was established in 2012 and has long been a lightning rod for Austria’s criticism of Saudi Arabia’s human rights record.

"The KAICIID made this decision a few days ago. A spokesperson for the Centre temporarily does not wish to confirm or deny the report." according to daily local newspaper Kurier.

The Austrian Parliament approved a motion last year, calling on Vienna to withdraw from the treaty on which the KAICIID is based, and to withdraw from an agreement that bases it in the Austrian capital. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it plans to take action on the bill. It said in a statement: "There is a clear parliamentary decision that must be implemented... All legally necessary steps" will be taken.

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