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Caricature of Mohammad Bin Salman and Netanyahu- Cartoon

King Salman's offer was made in a telephone call to Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Monday, following Iraq's 4-1 defeat of Saudi Arabia in a friendly - the first between the two countries for almost four decades.

HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Prime Minister, sent a cable of condolences to the Saudi King, may his soul rest in peace.

The FT report said London had a "good chance" of securing the listing, citing insiders briefed on the negotiations.

Initially planned for 2018, preparations have been hit by rows over whether Aramco should list on major Western markets at all.

Salman also personally invited Pope Tawadros to visit the Saudi Kingdom.

Saudi Arabia themselves have qualified for this summer's World Cup in Russian Federation - while Iraq missed out.

Saudi Arabia had sought to list 5% of Aramco's at some point this year in what would be the biggest IPO ever in terms of proceeds.

In a bid to allow non-Muslim tourists to visit historic sites such as Jeddah, Riyadh and the ancient city of Mada'in Saleh, Saudi Arabia is planning to issue tourist visas. They are preparing them for the implementation of the Royal Order in June this year.

The state has also reportedly taken "large sums" and real estate from Mohammed al-Tobaishi, former head of royal court protocol; Fawaz Alhokair, a businessman; Khalid al-Tuwaijery, former chief of the royal court; Adel Fakieh, former economic minister; and Dabbagh, a businessman who once oversaw the country's foreign investment authority.

With the prospect of a listing in London and NY receding, sources familiar with the IPO told Reuters that Hong Kong was now emerging as an increasingly likely compromise because Riyadh wants to help Asian nations that are expected to become cornerstone investors.

London will compete with NY for the $2trn foreign flotation, along with a Riyadh listing.

Sources close to the process, however, said even with emerging market status, Aramco would struggle to raise $100 billion locally. Aramco could also sell shares in China in a private placement.



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